More than two years after breaking his neck diving into the family pool, Nick Dempsey is bidding the Border farewell and heading to sunny Queensland to continue his rehabilitation.
The 23-year-old is leaving his parents behind in Albury and moving away with his girlfriend of about-a-year, Freya Saunders.
Nick, who was diagnosed with C4 quadriplegia after injuring himself on his 21st birthday, said the move would enable him to attend the Making Strides therapy centre more regularly and benefit his recovery.
He said the community's support since his accident had been humbling and was the reason he could afford the rehabilitation in Queensland.
"[The move] wouldn't be possible if it wasn't for the generosity of the community," he said.
"Having that support gives me extra drive to keep going - knowing people are supporting me and putting in time and money to help me."
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Nick's father Peter Dempsey said the money raised through the auctioning of a Thurgoona house, which was built by volunteers, was funding the treatment.
Peter said he and wife Trudy would miss Nick, but were happy for him.
"It's enabled Nick to move to Queensland and get the best therapy he can get," he said. "It's going to be a big change for him.
"But everything that's been thrown at him his whole life he's pushed around or through.
"It's going to be good for him."
Nick was not sure how much the sale of the Thurgoona house had raised but said the support shown was 'amazing'. At auction the house was passed in for a vendor bid of $550,000.
Nick and Freya will leave the Border on Friday and will be living in the old Commonwealth Games village, which has been converted into accessible apartments.
He said the move would bring its own challenges, but he was excited.
"I've travelled up for therapy a few times before, I've done two or four weeks and really enjoyed it," he said.
"The therapy is the main reason for moving but the warmer weather will be great and there will be a bit more for us, a bit of exploring.
"It's a new challenge and it's really exciting moving away on our own, it should be a good experience."
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