Nathan Parker

Pilot, Invictus Games gold medallist

NSWState RecipientYoung Australian of the Year2021

Nathan Parker was on the way to his dream job as a fighter pilot when a military bus accident left him badly injured and his left hand amputated.

Despite his injuries, Nathan returned to civilian flying in three months, resuming military and university duties within seven months. He was the first upper-limb amputee in the Australian Defence Force Academy’s history to complete his final 12 months and graduate.

After completing his degree in 2017, Nathan was medically discharged in 2019 to become a commercial pilot. He works as a senior RA-Aus flying instructor in Lismore, obtaining his commercial pilot’s licence and achieving his aerobatic endorsement.

A public speaker, mentor, flight instructor and now aspiring to provide joy flights for sick children, Nathan is also a gold-medal athlete. He represented Australia in the Invictus Games in Canada 2017 and Sydney 2018, winning nine medals including three gold in Sydney. He also brought home 17 medals from two USA Warrior Games.