utg anywhere near premiership side. He's fun to watch as long as it's not for u
With some control over his aggression (though to some extent the refs were targetting him) he could make a good Kiks replacement.
I admired Moses, his family, Alex McKinnon, who as we all know will never walk again, and Nathan Stapleton.
Do you remember when you used to be normal, daddy?’Mose Masoe was told he’d never walk again. Last month, he walked five kilometres. The former NRL player’s recovery from a serious spinal injury has defied the odds, but the setbacks just keep coming.
By Michael Chammas
May 20, 2022
few nights after Mose Masoe was rushed to hospital in February 2020, a 90-year-old man wandered into the foyer of the Leeds facility in the middle of the night.
“Are you OK?” Masoe’s partner Carissa asked the man.
It was two degrees outside. He appeared disorientated. All he had with him was a £10 note.
Talking to the Herald inside his new Sunshine Coast rental property, Masoe breaks down into tears telling the story.
Mose Masoe and family at home on the Sunshine Coast
“He wanted to donate to me,” an emotional Masoe says. “He wasn’t even a Hull fan. He was suffering from dementia and they had to call his next-door neighbour to take him home. When people you don’t even know do things like that for you, it’s special. I never got the chance to meet him. But I felt his love.”
It is now 829 days since Masoe’s life changed forever. Since a hush fell over Mobile Rocket Stadium during a pre-season Super League friendly against Wakefield Trinity.
Masoe’s partner and children were still making their way to their seats at the time.
“I just looked up and noticed a few people looking at me,” Carissa recalled. “I just remember thinking, ’Where’s 10?”
No.10 wasn’t moving. “I couldn’t feel anything,” Masoe said.
“I opened my eyes and tried to count to five. I thought, ‘This doesn’t feel right’. As soon as the doctor ran on the field I said, ‘I think I broke my neck’.”
Masoe was taken from the field on a stretcher and carried to the change rooms to wait for an ambulance.
“Pinch my leg,” Masoe asked his fiancée. “Pinch my leg.”
“I was already pinching him,” Carissa said. “He had dents in his skin from how hard I was pinching.”
‘You’ll never walk again’At the same time Masoe was being admitted to hospital, a teenage girl was rushed in with a stab wound to the neck. The severity of her injury meant Masoe was no longer the priority. Tragically, she later died.
Masoe eventually woke from surgery at 4am the next day. He had a buzzer on his chest and pain medication on the nearby table.
“How am I going to push this buzzer?” he thought. “How am I going to get this medicine?“
He was now a quadriplegic. It was over the next four hours, as he waited for Carissa to arrive so that he could drink and scratch his nose, that reality sank in.
But having found out just a few days earlier that their “miracle baby” was on the way, Masoe refused to feel sorry for himself.
“I didn’t want to stress Carissa out because we were trying for baby No.3 for a while and had a few complications before that,” he said. “He was coming in six months. I had to try and get as good as I can get so I would be able to hold this kid when he came out. That was my goal and my biggest drive when it happened.”
Doctors told him to come to terms with the likelihood that he would not walk again. Operating a wheelchair was deemed a best-case scenario.
“That wasn’t going to be me,” Masoe said.
For now, though, Masoe had to concentrate on everyday tasks. He allowed his teammates to feed him. He accepted his partner’s help to shower him while lying in bed.
And with each day – long periods of which were spent staring at the ceiling, counting the tiles – things began to improve.
A visit from Johnathan Thurston raised the spirits of the entire ward, who could not believe their eyes when the Australian great surprised Masoe.
Masoe began sneaking his own rehabilitation sessions against the doctors’ recommendations, so determined was he to walk again.
Eight months after suffering the injury, he took his first steps. A few months later, on one of his first outings since leaving hospital, he experienced a moment that will live with him for the rest of his life.
Standing at traffic lights with his family, waiting to cross the main street in Hull, a couple of drivers recognised him and sounded their horns to show their support. Other motorists saw what was happening and followed suit.
“All of a sudden 100 people were beeping their horns,” Masoe recalls. “I kept telling myself, ‘Don’t fall over’. The light had gone red. They were all waiting for me to cross the road, beeping their horns in support. It was a nice moment I will never forget.”
Beating the oddsMasoe beat the odds when he took just one step. Having returned to Australia, he recently walked five kilometres, with the assistance of crutches, for charity.
“What he can do now for himself is what he could only dream of two years ago,” Carissa said.
But Masoe’s recovery also comes with realisation that life, while improving, will never return to the way it was.
“Do you remember when you used to be normal, daddy?” one of his daughters asked.
“The hardest thing for the kids is at the park or the beach, Mose has to sit and doesn’t get to play with them,” Carissa said.
“Sometimes they’ll want him to do stuff and you can see them realise, ‘Oh, Dad can’t do that’.
For Mose, his positive attitude remains his greatest strength.
“It’s tough but then I have to look at where I came from,” he said. “You look back, I was just in a bed and couldn’t move. You just have to be grateful to be out with the kids, even to just sit there and watch because there are a lot of people in a similar situation to myself who wouldn’t be able to do what I do.
“They can see that I’m improving. It’s giving them that hope that hopefully one day my dad can push me on the swing.”
Carissa is now Masoe’s full-time carer. They wake up before the sun rises on most mornings to prepare for the day. What most people don’t realise is that the paralysis in the limbs wasn’t the only part of his body that was compromised.
“I would give up my legs to be able to have a normal bladder and bowel,” Masoe said. “I would happily sit in a wheelchair for the rest of my life if I could just go to the toilet normally. That’s how big of an issue it is. There are days I won’t go out because I haven’t had a bowel movement for a few days. I think everyone’s bowel contracts three times an hour. But mine is three in a day.”
Facing the futureMasoe’s medical costs are currently running at around $80 a day, or $570 a week. “I think sometimes it’s hard for other people to understand because he’s up and about walking, everyone assumes it’s all going to be fine,” Carissa said. “He still needs a lot of help. I know there’s going to be setbacks.”
Since returning to Australia, the family has discovered they are not eligible for The National Disability Insurance Scheme despite Masoe – a New Zealand citizen – having previously lived in Australia for eight years.
The family were told Mose, despite his partner and some of his children being born in the country, had to live in the country for 10 years. But just as they thought they only had to wait another two years, they discovered the clock reset when he left the country to go play rugby league in England.
“We had no idea,” Carissa said. “We kind of expected a little waiting period but we have to wait 10 years to be entitled to any NDIS funding. That’s massive for us because that’s massages, physiotherapy, medicine, medical equipment, catheters ... which he needs to be the best he can be. There’s nothing we can do.”
They have also been told by an insurance company in England that they are probably only entitled to a pay-out of £5000 for his career-ending and life-changing injury. The $250,000 raised by Sportsbet and the Men of League foundation through last year’s Try July campaign has been critical.
It will go towards the house they are about to start building on the Sunshine Coast which is designed to accommodate the needs of the former Sydney Roosters, Penrith Panthers and St George Illawarra front-rower.
“If we didn’t have that help from everyone in the rugby league community I don’t know if we would have survived,” Masoe said.
Mose Masoe was told he’d never walk again. Last month, he walked five kilometres. The former NRL player’s recovery from a serious spinal injury has defied the odds, but the setbacks just keep coming.www.smh.com.au
Yeah he could be anything with his talent and I love watching him but not for us hahaReplacing one thug for another. Never change Newcastle.
To be fair though, Jack isn't malicious, he just has terrible technique. Still love the guy though, he's the best kind of lunatic.
I always believed his worth was as a wide running back rower.Yeah he could be anything with his talent and I love watching him but not for us haha