Where are they now: Paralympic swimming legend Tim McIsaac

Canadian Paralympic Committee

March 04, 2021

Checking in with the 28-time Paralympic medallist

Paralympic swimming legend Tim McIsaac at a podium

With 28 Paralympic medals and a career that spanned many years, Tim McIsaac is one of Canada’s greatest Para swimmers ever. 

From Winnipeg, McIsaac competed at the 1976, 1980, 1984, and 1988 Paralympic Games, winning medals at all four events including 15 golds. A 2013 inductee into the Canadian Paralympic Hall of Fame, McIsaac is also part of the Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame and has received numerous other accolades. 

Below we check in with McIsaac as he looks back on his Paralympic career: 

What did it mean to you to be able to represent Canada at the Paralympic Games?

It was truly an honour and an experience I will never forget. The excitement has never compared with anything since.

What are some of your favourite memories from competing for Canada? 

I think the friends I made, the feeling of accomplishment, and the lifestyle.

What is your proudest sporting achievement from your career? 

Learning to do tumble turns as a congenitally blind person. 

What are you up to now?

I work for the provincial government, I am involved in several fraternal organizations, I have sat on several boards, and am almost finished my second master’s degree. 

What message would you like to share to current athletes on the road to the Tokyo Paralympic Games? 

Just think about doing your best and staying in the moment. Enjoy the experience for what it truly is – a test of yourself against yourself. If I had had that attitude, I would have gotten so much more out of the experience over everything I did get out of it – which was a lot. 

Fast Facts
Current TV show you are binge-watching: Ted Lasso 
Favourite winter activity: Snowmobiling  
Hero: My coach Wilf Strom 
Celebrity you would most want to have dinner with: Judge Judy 
Most used emoji: Smiling face with three hearts 
Favourite hobby: Volunteering 
Any favourite mottos: Lou Holtz: “Ability is what you are capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how you do it.” 

Each month ‘where are they now’ will feature a different member of the Canadian Paralympic alumni community to hear some of their favourite memories and check in to find out what they’re up to now.  

Past Editions:
Simon Richard – Goalball 
Kirstie Kasko – Para Swimming
Paul Clark – Para Athletics

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