Angus Paralympians honoured

TWO ANGUS disabled sporting heroes were among the first group to be inducted into a special hall of fame last week.

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the foundation of the Scottish Disability Sport (SDS) association a hall of fame was announced at their annual general meeting last Wednesday.

Mary Anne Low, Arbroath, and Caroline Baird, Carnoustie, were among the first 20 inductees into the hall of fame.

The SDS Hall of Fame will hopefully inspire future generations of disabled sportsmen and women by creating an easily accessible record of the achievements of past champions.

Mary Ann Low is considered Scotland’s finest ever blind sportswoman and was a permanent fixture in the British swim team throughout the 1980s and 1990s.

A member of St Thomas Swimming Club Mary Ann competed in mainstream galas all over Scotland as the only blind swimmer.

During her career she amassed a total of 36 medals at World, European and Paralympic levels.

She represented Great Britain at the Paralympic Games in Seoul and Barcelona and at her peak in 1984 won one gold, one silver and three bronze medals at the New York Games.

Caroline Baird MBE, originally from Fife, settled in Carnoustie following a glittering athletic career despite suffering from cerebral palsy.

Caroline began her athletic career with an appearance as a member of the Scottish Junior Squad at the British Junior Swimming Championships.

She took up sprinting after being encouraged to try athletics and was part of the Scottish Youth Team at the 1989 World Games in Miami.

Her first Paralympic appearance was at the Barcelona Games in 1992 where she won gold.

Further appearances at the Atlanta and Sydney Games won her another three golds and a silver.

For over a decade Caroline was recognised as the best sprinter in the T36 class and helped challenge perceptions of disabled athletes.