Wellington’s inspirational concierge Jason Eade has been confirmed as one of the Olympic Torchbearers in the lead up to the 2012 Olympic Games in England later this year.
On Saturday 23 June, the InterContinental Wellington chief concierge will carry the torch on a stretch of the journey in Preston, England.
Born in Timaru and growing up in Bluff, the avid sportsman was the winner of four New Zealand Boxing Championship titles and had his sights on a 1992 Olympics medal when his life was turned upside down in 1991 by a motorcycle accident and subsequent loss of a leg.
With inspirational determination, Jason turned his attention to wheelchair-based sports including wheelchair tennis (1992-1996 – ranking number two in New Zealand and winning his grade in the Japan Wheelchair Tennis Open), and New Zealand Wheelchair Basketball (1992-1996) and is now focused on reaching his goal of playing in the US Amputee Golf Open.
Eade said he feels very honoured and privileged to be part of such an amazing occasion.
“Representing InterContinental Wellington – my colleagues and the guests, and New Zealand – my friends and family, is a huge opportunity,” he said. “There are many people I’ll be thinking of as I take my “moment to shine” as a London Olympic 2012 Torchbearer. It’s going to be a lot of fun.”
InterContinental Wellington director of marketing Geoff Naumann said Eade epitomises everything great about kiwi determination.
“Eade puts the interests of everyone else – guests and colleagues – first, which speaks volumes for the humility of the man,” Naumann said. “He draws his inspiration from those he works with, but underestimates how much of a motivator he is to all his colleagues.
“It’s an honour to have a team member like Eade working for InterContinental Wellington, and we’re so thrilled by his global selection.”
Eade was nominated by InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), one of the official Olympics partners. In total 70 of IHG’s personnel worldwide will carry the torch on behalf of their families and communities.
In addition to sponsor nominations, some 37,000 people applied to take part in the torch relay. Selection was based on the positive difference to the community or the environment an individual had made, or in recognition of an outstanding achievement in their life.
In total 8,000 people will carry the torch on its 70-day journey which begins at Land’s End on 19 May and weaves 8000 miles through major cities and landmarks, tiny villages and remote islands the length of Britain, to arrive in London in time for the Olympic Games commencing on July 27.
Relay officials, and in some locations the torch itself, will be hosted by more than 40 IHG properties (including InterContinental, Crowne Plaza and Holiday Inn brands) during the relay through the UK.