This is the story of a man who is determined to go the extra mile even when living with a disability.
EMTV Sports came across Madang Para Athlete Paul Mokrui at the 7th PNG Games in West New Britain last month and it was his character and ambition that showed through even before taking out the first Gold medal for Madang in the Para event of Shot Put.
32-year-old Paul Mokrui who hails from a mixed parentage of Usino, Madang Province and Western Highlands Province is one individual who is a living proof of the saying, “All things are possible”.
Growing up in the tough conditions of the Highlands region taught Mokrui to be a fighter.
For someone who had lost the ability to walk at the age of 2 to polio, after a series of missed immunisation injections, Mokrui completed school and went on to Madang Teachers College where he graduated 8 years ago.
He currently teaches a class of 55 at the Holy Spirit Primary School in Madang province.
But believing to be of a greater calling, Mokrui did not see teaching as all he can do.
After a stint in Wewak in the Regional Para Athlete Championship in 2013, Mokrui knew he still had to make his mark on a national scale.
And after missing out on the 2014 PNG Games in Lae, Mokrui worked hard to make his appearance at this year’s PNG Games.
Speaking to EMTV Sports on Day 1 of the games last month, he revealed his ambitions.
“I want to attend bigger para-sporting events after the PNG Games and I am here to bring the challenge and at least win a medal or two,” said Mokrui.
True enough, Mokrui took out the first Gold for Madang in the first para-sport event of Shot Put.
“I am very proud because this is my first time to attend the PNG Games,” the school teacher remarked.
And without breaking that momentum, the 32-year-old went on to take out gold in the seated-javelin as well.
Representing Madang at the games came naturally for him, as he has been a resident for over a decade, and he surely done Madang proud.
An active individual professionally as a teacher and as a sports person, Mokrui is not only celebrating a sporting success this year, he has also been selected to Special and Inclusive Education Bachelors program at the University of Goroka.
But in these hard economic times, financing further studies is another battle he has to overcome.
“I am now appealing to the Madang Government to help further my studies and contribute more to the greater good of my community,” added Mokrui.
Mokrui not only carried the Madang flag at the games and took out Gold Medals, he also teaches 55 future human resources of Madang.
The question remains, what can Madang do for him?