NZDF

Bronze Medal in Rowing for Former Soldier at Invictus Games

Faamanu “Nu” Filo Leaana pushes his way through the pain during the Men’s IR5 finals at the 2016 Invictus Games in Orlando, Florida.
Faamanu “Nu” Filo Leaana pushes his way through the pain during the Men’s IR5 finals at the 2016 Invictus Games in Orlando, Florida.

10 May 2016

Former soldier Faamanu “Nu” Filo Leaana rowed his way into the medals tally today as part of the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) team competing at the 2016 Invictus Games held in Orlando, Florida.

An accident during his Army service resulted in the Wellingtonian suffering a lower limb amputation and other injuries. He overcame strong competition to win bronze, rowing 354 metres in the IR5 one-minute row.

Nu, who is taking part in several sporting events during the four-day competition says "It feels good just to be here and compete. Rowing was part of my journey back, so it's fitting for me to come out of this with a medal."

The Invictus Games places strong emphasis on the way sport can help the recovery of people who have been wounded, injured or have become ill while in service. The games also recognise the support of friends and family, and the challenges they face when a loved one is affected.

Nu's partner Mary and close friend Brooke have gone to cheer him on at the games.

"It means a lot to have Mary here; she’s been my top supporter since day one. I'm thrilled to have both Mary and Brooke here as part of the Friends and Family Programme," said Nu.

The Invictus Games run until 12 May at the ESPN Wide World of Sport Complex, in Orlando, Florida.

The NZDF Invictus Games team is sponsored by the Auckland RSA and Christchurch Memorial RSA, BLK Sport, Fulton Hogan, OffLimits Trust and the Fallen Heroes Trust.

The team's journey can be followed on Facebook.com/InvictusGamesNZ

ENDS

For further information, please contact Defence Public Affairs on 021 487 980

This page was last reviewed on 12 May 2016, and is current.