“Perhaps the most rewarding thing about Dragon boat racing for me is that I’ve learnt to accept my own mortality. Something I have spent countless amounts of energy on and refused to do for 9 years. Then I met Judy Costello.
Jude was our drummer. Even though she was very unwell during our training time, she still showed up every week and when she couldn’t paddle anymore she took on drumming with gusto. Drumming is not easy (I’ve had a go) but Judy was fantastic. Judy taught me that you don’t live forever but you should make the best of what you’ve got. Judy passed away three weeks after the Melbourne Dragon boat festival. Her funeral was a celebration of her life. Dragon boat paddling was acknowledged as a big part of the last months of her life. I am proud to have been a part of that. Next time I’m on the river and I hear thunder, I’ll think of Judy drumming the beat for that special dragon boat team in the sky.”