June 1st, 2008

Dr Anthony Pun is a graduate from the University of NSW with a Ph D in Molecular Biology.  He is a man of obvious vitality and vigour which he has channelled into the promotion of Australia China relations since the early 1980s.

Dr Pun, a former President of the Australian Chinese Community Association (1989/92), is a prominent member of the Chinese Australian community and is actively involved in a number of community organisations.  For his services to the Chinese Australian community, he received two NSW Premier’s Awards for Community Services (1991 & 1996) and the Medal of the Order of Australian in 1997.  He is the current Chairman of the Chinese Australian Union and he also chairs the Chinese Australian Celebration Committee which celebrates Australia Day in the community.  Dr Pun was elected as the President of the newly formed national body, the Chinese Community Council of Australia in mid 2007.

The whole evening gave witness to a most enthusiastic endorsement of Australia and Australia Day.  It was an impressive display of one culture supporting, in full, the culture in which they now reside.  Individual attendees reflected the same positive attitude.  Lindy Hou, who arrived in Australia with her family in 1974, is a great example of that attitude, and what can be achieved in life even when faced with a new, foreign culture. 

Lindy Hou has fulfilled her life time dream of standing on the winner’s podium at the Athens Paralympic Games experiencing the Australian flag being raised and singing our National Anthem by winning 1 Gold, 2 Silver & 1 Bronze in the Women’s Tandem Cycling events.

Lindy is vision impaired; she has a degenerative eye condition called Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP), and she has been legally blind since 1996. Her Guide Dog Harper has been her companion for the last 2 years and he likes to ensure that Lindy does not bump into things as they get around town.  Intriguinly, Harper has his own blogging web site!

In the 1990s, when Lindy first began to lose her sight, she was unable to continue to play ball sports. She then took up Triathlon and represented Australia in the World Championships as an age grouper.  Lindy was a fiercely competitive Triathlete but when her eyesight deteriorated further she had to give up competitive cycling.  For many, this would have meant the end of her involvement and enjoyment of cycling, but not for Lindy.  In 1999 she rediscovered the joy of cycling on a Tandem bike when she completed a fundraising ride from Sydney to Leeton.

Lindy narrowly missed gaining a position on the Sydney 2000 Paralympic cycling squad but was determined to fulfil her dreams.
In the 2004 Athens Paralympic Games, Lindy was able to stand on the podium 4 times, twice with each of her two pilots, Janelle Lindsay & Toireasa Gallagher.

To top off the Athens result, Janelle and Lindy were also honoured on the 2005 Australian Day Honours’ list with an OAM for Service to Sports by winning the Gold Medal at Athens.  On the 19 September 2005, Lindy and her endurance pilot, Toireasa Gallagher established a World One Hour Record of 42.93km as a fundraiser for RP.

Anthony Pun and Lindy Hou are inspiring examples of achievement to all Australians, irregardless of their original country of origin.

In the context of such achievements the citizenship test paper is really an irrelevance……MiSay

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