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Inspirational interview: Double-amputee and meningococcal survivor Mike Rolls defies the odds

Mike Rolls was just 18 when he contracted an illness that would claim his right leg, half his left foot, two fingers, part of his nose and see him lucky to leave hospital with his life.

In 2001, on a football trip to Hobart, Mike contracted meningococcal septicaemia.

“We were getting dropped off at the airport and that’s the last memory I have,” Mike told Neil Mitchell.

“I was rushed by ambulance to the Royal Hobart Hospital.”

Neil: They thought you were dying?

Mike: Oh they did, and I was.

“You can’t really get any sicker,” Mike said.

He spent five and a half weeks in a coma and when he woke, he was ‘riddled with pain’, missing his right leg and covered in skin grafts.

But that’s, as he put it, “when all the fun started.”

“I ended up getting lung infections, I went from 80kg down to 47kg.

“I had bleeds on the brain.”

“All I knew was that I loved life, I wanted to keep living.”

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Mike slowly recovered but was left with half his left foot and a wound that would never properly heal.

“I wanted to chop my leg off,” he said.

Eventually Mike found a doctor that would amputate his second leg, and through exhaustive rehabilitation, he has become an accomplished athlete and public speaker.

Golf acted as a “brilliant rehabilitation tool” for Mike, and he currently has a handicap of five.

He’s been invited to play in the all abilities challenge at the Australian Open in November.

More information is available about Mike here.