The Site

The Site

Why a blog called WheelchairJohn?

WheelchairJohn shares how I navigate life with an acquired disability as a Christian.

Life isn’t about what happens to you. Life is about how you respond to what happens to you.

What happened to you?

Wheelchair Blog - In ICU with a neck brace, many tubes and equipment

At age 44, I almost died and acquired a complete SCI (Spinal Cord Injury) at the T3/T4 level (the chest level). My spinal cavity developed a cyst, medically known as a Syringomyelia. This causes pain levels so severe, and I considered death a better alternative. Click here for the blog that shares details of the accident.

However, life is still worth living, and I live a fulfilling and happy life—Albeit, with many challenges.

Why use the domain

Wheelchairjohn is a lousy way of describing me, as I am John Duthie, who uses a wheelchair, who has a spinal injury, and chronic pain, who follows Jesus, and many other things.

However, Wheelchairjohn is easy to remember and sounds better than johnwheelchair, or johninawheelchair or other combinations.

More about me

My site is located at, and the following is a summary.

I was born on 31 July 1965 at the Queen Victoria Hospital at Rose Park, Adelaide. My parents were Alexander and Joyce Duthie, and I was an only child.  I had a happy upbringing.

My education included Payneham Kindergarten, Payneham Infant School, Payneham Primary School, Marden High School, and later the South Australian Institute of Technology where I completed a Bachelor of Applied Science in Computer Studies.

My working career commenced as a junior programmer with the Department of Defence in Canberra ACT and finished as a team leader/project manager with South Australia Police. In between, I worked at SAGASCO (SA Gas Company), ETSA (the Electricity Trust of South Australia), JIS (Justice Information System), Department of Correctional Services, and Zedz Cafe (in Adelaide Central Market).

WheelchairJohn - john sitting outside his house looking over his shoulder

I’ve worshipped and served at various churches, including the Salvation Army, and most recently at Rise Church, Northgate. Having a Faith is essential to me, although, at times, my relationship with the church was strained, as I like to think for myself.

I married my wife in 1991, and Jasmine was born in 1998, and Benjamin in 1999. Commencing late 2009, I spent 16 months in the hospital, and became separated from my wife in 2012, and continued to live with and support my children.  Jasmine is now 20 and Ben 19, and we have a stray cat that adopted us and is called Spartacus.  My partner is Madie, and although we live apart, we share something in common. You will need to read my upcoming book to find out.

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