Male NDIS participant being supported by his female LA at a coffee shop

Gordon's story

We’re privileged to share Gordon’s story and how he is determined to live life how he chooses, letting nothing slow him down.

Gordon had a successful career, running his own business including an earthmoving company, being a licenced builder and overseeing the family’s real estate business.

That was, until he suffered a heart attack on a work site. He was rushed to Flinders Medical Centre and within a few days underwent surgery. On the operating table, Gordon had another heart attack and further complications which left him in a coma.

After two weeks in a coma, Gordon awoke to discover that his mobility had been significantly reduced and one of his vocal cords had been permanently damaged.

Gordon has been strongly supported by his wife, Chris, to overcome his challenges and manage his lifestyle. To maintain Gordon’s independence, together, they started to search for suitable support to assist him in doing what he enjoys. The process took several years, but in 2018, they contacted Enhanced Lifestyles.

Since then, Gordon has been working with his Lifestyle Attendant, Debbie, who he has formed an enviable working relationship with over the years, and which has seen Gordon thrive. Gordon said, “it’s brought me so much joy to see Debbie, she always has a smile on her face and knows how to brighten my day.”

Debbie has supported Gordon in developing a well-rounded personal care routine at home so he can pursue his interests. Chris said, “we are so lucky to have Debbie in our lives; her dedication and compassion for supporting Gordon is a reassuring and heart-warming to see.”

Gordon absolutely loves exploring the South Australian community. He enjoys researching and planning day trips to see the countryside, whether it’s catching a ride on the Steam Ranger train in Victor Harbor or journeying through the Adelaide Hills to visit local restaurants that he’s been keen to check out.

Around Adelaide, Gordon enjoys visiting different cafes to try their cakes and iced coffee, his favourite drink, and driving past houses under construction to reminisce his former days as a builder. Gordon’s favourite time of the year is March. With Debbie’s support, he’ll either be spotted at the Garden of Unearthly Delights watching artists and comedians perform, or at WOMADelaide.

Debbie said, “Gordon is so adventurous; he’s constantly organising places he wants to visit. His determination to be independent is what drives me, he’s so headstrong despite everything he’s been through, which is an inspiration to me.

I feel like I am part of the family by supporting Gordon to achieve something he’s set his mind to. If Gordon’s smiling, I’m smiling too.”

Gordon is a regular Lifestyle Lunch attendee. Not only does he get to catch up with friends, but the events also present him the opportunity to connect with other customers to understand their perspectives which informs his contribution to Enhanced Lifestyles Board meetings.


Become a member

Membership provides the opportunity to have voting rights on important decisions that will shape our future. Some members can nominate to actually sit on our Board to help govern the organisation on behalf of other customers that we serve.


Gordon is strongly committed to his faith, which forged his commitment to supporting others however he can. Gordon has held roles on several not-for-profit boards as he is committed to making a positive difference in the lives of others. This includes the involvement with Avondale College Foundation, a contributor to the National & International, Adventist Disaster Relief Agency, and the Adventist Church.

Looking ahead, Gordon has his sights set on travelling to Robe for a holiday with his family later this year. We’re excited to hear more about Gordon’s adventures as he’s supported by Debbie to live an enhanced life.

If you want support to live life how you choose at home or in the community, complete this form here, or call 8340 2000 to start a conversation with our friendly team.

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