Anne and Patrick Napoli are well-known faces in the Griffith community, and their local celebrity status will see them represent Griffith in the Queen’s Baton Relay on January 28.
Working hard to better the situation of some marginalised Griffith residents, Mrs Napoli said it is they are both honoured and privileged.
“I recently found out Patrick would be passing the baton onto me, and I became very emotional about it, thinking this is a kid who isn’t even supposed to be here, not to be walking let alone run, and passing the baton on to me, has a lot of meaning,” Mrs Napoli said.
Patrick’s pizzazz with his artwork has seen him raise important funds, recently donating his a piece to CanAssist, raising $1000 for the Griffith-based charity.
“It doesn’t matter what their disability is, they always have their own abilities, and Patrick enjoys his artwork,” Mrs Napoli said.
“He has donated many paintings over the years, and the highlight was donating that painting to CanAssit. He is very possessive of his artwork, as every piece means something to him, and he will do it all again.”
Patrick was an Olympic torch bearer in 2000, so being selected again was a major honour.
Being chosen to light the cauldron in front of over 15000 people on a very cold and windy night was the highlight of his life, and so now being a baton bearer is bringing all the excitement back.
Anne has been involved in our community “since forever” and clearly enjoys what she does.
“I’m involved with schools, preschools, athletics, soccer, and I also do a lot of work as a volunteer, doing a lot of work for those with disabilities and carers,” She said.
“I have challenged many issues concerning those, and I work with Griffith City Council as an elected member, and it’s a honour to represent the community and be their voice.”
While she says she has no standout achievement, every win is a big one.
“I guess every time something is achieved, when I’ve been able to lobby to get positive results, it is a major achievement.”
“Something as small as getting funding for a footpath or representing concerns of individuals in our community, you really can’t say one stands out more than the other, because they are all worthwhile and are all major concerns to the community, so to me it’s still amazing whether it be big or small.”
The following have been selected as Baton Bearers for the Griffith segment of the Queen's Baton Relay as selected by the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games Organisers:
- Jenny Beer
- John Binks
- Domenic Calabria
- Laura Crockart
- Veronica Cudmore
- Kellie Dissegna
- Elizabeth Graham
- Carmel La Roca
- Jodie Landy
- Claire Murray
- Anne Nappoli
- Patrick Napoli
- Alex Niven
- Dale Paul
- Gavin Raccanello
- Francesco Scarfone
- Grant Semmler
- Leon Thorpe
- Heather White
Join them along Banna Avenue and Kookora St from 4pm and celebrate with them at the Community Gardens from 4.30pm.