Luke Sinnott, one of the world’s best Paralympic long jumpers, came to Angmering to open a Daily Mile track and inspire pupils at St Margaret’s Primary School.
He spoke to the children about his Army life in the Royal Engineers and talked of the day he stepped on an IED, with the blast claiming both his legs above the knee, severely damaging his left arm and breaking multiple bones and fingers.
Luke said: “The human body is pretty amazing, it heals very well. It changed my life significantly. I am still rehabilitating to be honest but it has taken eight or nine years to get to this stage.
“I decided to be a Paralympian. I tried every sport out there and I stuck on long jump. It is a very technical sport, there is a lot to it and you need to maintain a lot of power training to get there.
“I felt such pride when I got the call up to Team GB. Considering what I did before, representing my country was quite important to me.”
Luke officially opened the new track, funded by the PTA at the Arundel Road school, then demonstrated his blades by running around the circuit with pupils.
Head teacher Mike Jee said: “What a fantastic, amazing story Luke has and it fits in wonderfully with our values, showing resilience, getting up and carrying on and not giving up at all.
“Our plan is for every child to used the track every day, in all weathers, to get the children really nice and active. They will come out as a class and we hope they will be able to do up to eight times around it, which is a mile.
“Our teachers are already starting to use it before school. The reception teacher ran 6k before school on the day of the opening ceremony.”