Olympic Torch - Corby

Meet Your Corby Torchbearers

Olympic Torch - Corby Name: Alex Van Vliet
Hometown: Wellingborough
Age: 38
Nomination: He continues to inspire me with; - His Olympic efforts for various charities with his butterfly challenge where he was raising money for Marie Curie Cancer, and his new endeavor for the British Heart Foundation at the Bournemouth pier to pier! Which has led me want to volunteer for more activities such as the internal Olympic challenge and the Midnight Moo. His selflessness in taking in foster children at quite a young age and showing real concern for their future life is awe inspiring.
Olympic Torch - Corby Name: Angelo Gualtieri
Hometown: Pescara
Age: 24
Nomination: I was a ""victim"" of the earthquake in L'Aquila. That night I tore up curtains from a bar to use as blankets. A couple days later, I gave my megaphone to the firefighters so they could help others in need.
London 2012 Olympic torch Name: Des Barber
Hometown: Corby
Age: 52
Nomination: Des spent 15 years working to set up a community radio station in Corby and he now uses this platform to raise the profile of local charities, He works tirelessly sometimes 7 days a week at local events, promoting Corby and raising money for local based charities such as Lakelands Hospice and many other local charities. He also set up a training academy at the radio station to encourage youngsters to do something positive with their time.
Olympic Torch - Corby Name: Fabrizio Mineo
Hometown: Tor San Lorenzo
Age: 35
Nomination: I went to Bagheria to educate seventeen year-olds about the mafia. I was sure it was a waste of time. I returned later to speak to the same kids. I was still sure it was a waste of time. ""What has changed since our talk?"" Shyly, almost as though ashamed, ""We did do one thing. At our soccer tournament, after we scored, we cheered, shouting, ""To hell with the mafia!"""" ""Really?!"" ""Yes. After a couple seconds of silence, everyone started clapping!"" I was overjoyed. I might not be the hero of this story?it seems more like I just happened to spark the real heroes into action. But it sure wasn't a waste of time!
Olympic Torch - Corby Name: Gary Bilbrough
Hometown: Dunstable
Age: 46
Nomination: Gary has a natural people friendly personality. When it comes to being part of the community Gary never stands back. His involvement ranges from holding street parties like a tropical beach party and a royal wedding party. Gary is a member of Toddington Street Watch and is on the Toddington parish council. Gary and Sue also organize and fund MADL Christmas lunches for 50 residents from the local care home. -'Truly a community hero
Olympic Torch - Corby Name: Gianfranco Chirico
Hometown: Bologna
Age: 43
Nomination: The Corn Factory is a Tiny Home for tiny invalids and their parents, while they wait to return to their own homes. The factory creates tiny objects out of cornmeal for them. These little animals, fairies and monsters are ugly in an adult's eye, but beautiful for our little patients. Gianfranco is the expert when it comes to making them. Every time a child asks for one more... and one more! we make it for them. If they ask, ""will you come back to play with me?"" it shows that we have managed to create a Tiny Home together.
London 2012 Olympic torch
Name: Neil Graham
Hometown: Corby
Age: 20
Nomination: Niall who I 20 is a Team GB goallball player who is expected t go to the London 2012 Paralympic Games. He's played goallball for just over a year. Before he started to lose his sight he played basketball for Leicester Cannons Under 18s and competed as an England Under 18 All Star. He has applied for a Coca-Cola Youth Foundation/StreetGames bursary so that he can develop a 2 day team building residential event for local StreetGames groups at an outdoor activity centre where they will learn new skills and enhance their own personal development.
Olympic Torch - Corby Name: Ollie Bliss
Hometown: Leicester
Age: 18
Nomination: Ollie who was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma in August 2009. He went through Chemotherapy and intensive radiotherapy to the extent that he wouldn't grow anymore and his spleen would no longer be functional. You probably will get lots of cancer nominations but where I think Ollie is different is that he decided to stay on at school and do his A levels despite this very intensive treatment. He did feel very bad on most days but incredibly in January 2010 he sat his C1 maths exam and got 100%. He is and was an inspiration to all those around him, especially his school friends and family. Ollie is a very humble person and has also taken on leadership at his local youth group and inspires them in their life decisions. Ollie has recently taken up running and really enjoys this. To carry the flame would be an amazing pinnacle after all he has been through. There is no guarantee that the cancer will not return.
Olympic Torch - Corby Name: Penny Mitchell
Hometown: Northamptonshire
Age: 21
Nomination: Penny is inspirational. Whilst training for trampoline competition she fell and suffered an injury to her arm that required five operations during the following three days. Over the ensuing weeks and despite being warned that she may she loose the arm and would probably never regain full motion she vowed to return and fulfil her dream of competing in the Olympics. Penny left hospital after a month with her arm intact and was back on a trampoline inside four months. Having astounded her coach and surgeons; Penny has now been selected for the England team and has dedicated her life to competing in Rio in 2016. She fits in a part-time university course and a job so that she can carry out the six day a week training schedule and is firmly on track for a GB place in 2016.
Olympic Torch - Corby Name: Sophie Tanswell
Hometown: Northamptonshire
Age: 14
Nomination: Sophie is a rhythmic gymnast, but more than that she is an inspirational coach to all the young gymnasts in our club ? at age 13. Competing for years, Sophie showed a passion for the sport. Working hard, she became the sole representative of our club in the regional squad. For this in itself, the younger gymnasts had a huge respect for her. However, her truly inspirational behaviour began 3 years ago when she discovered a natural gift for coaching. She now attends every session the club offers (4 times a week), coaching the recreational and novice gymnast as well as younger advanced girls. Girls always want to work with her, and she has become one of the most reliable and able coaches. This has impacted on her own training, but she always puts her coaching first. Once her dream was to compete in the Olympics, now it is to coach a future Olympian- and with Sophie guiding them there are queues of young hopefuls.
Olympic Torch - Corby Name: Susan Miller
Hometown: Corby
Age: 61
Nomination: My mum Susan Miller, is a single parent, and has fostered over 70 children. She takes on some of the most difficult to place children and never turns away a child in need of a home. As well as caring for children with learning difficulties and/or behavior problems she works with them to help prepare them for the outside world when they eventually have to leave her care. As well as looking after the foster children, my mum also works as a teaching assistant in the local school, again working closely with children on a one-to-one level and whole classes to help those who have learning difficulties. At the age of 60 she has also just passed her maths GCSE exam, in order to better help her teaching. She is also a keen runner, having completed 2 London marathons, several half marathons and the Great North Run in 2009. My mum would be very proud to carry the torch.

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