Know the Legacy of the Man Behind Adam Smiddy Park in Milton

To most passers-by the Adam Smiddy Park on the corner of Park Road and Gordon St in Milton is a small grassy area with some benches to eat lunch, however the significance of the name leaves a strong legacy of Adam Smiddy’s fight against cancer.

Adam Smiddy was a talented triathlete and respected physiotherapist, but his life was cut short in 2006 when he passed away at just 26 years old from an aggressive melanoma. Despite his battle with cancer, Adam never lost his disarming smile and kind-hearted nature. His death left a profound impact on his family and friends.

Six weeks after Adam died, his friend and triathlon coach, Mark ‘Sharky’ Smoothy, along with two other mates, fulfilled one of Adam’s unrealised dreams by cycling 1,600 kilometres from Brisbane to Adam’s hometown of Home Hill. They had nothing but a credit card in their back pockets and in the process, raised an incredible $24,000 for cancer research.

This journey was just the beginning of something bigger. In the following year, 22 friends joined Sharky, Ron Steel, and Oliver Bodak for the ride, and in 2008, the group had grown to 50 riders, who raised an astounding $420,000 for cancer research. The Smiling for Smiddy Foundation was born.

Since then, the Smiling for Smiddy legacy has continued to grow, with more and more people joining the fight against cancer. The foundation has raised over $10 million for world-class cancer research at Mater in the areas of melanoma, prostate, breast, and ovarian cancers. The Smiling for Smiddy Foundation is proof that every contribution counts, no matter how small it may seem.

His legacy also lives on through the Smiddy Fun Run, an event organized by the Physiotherapy Department of the Princess Alexandria Hospital (PA) to celebrate and remember Adam through something he loved doing. The run takes place every year to help raise funds and awareness for skin cancer research at the PA, and has raised over $150,000 to date.

Adam may have left this world too soon but his legacy and the fight against cancer continue. The Adam Smiddy Park is a stark reminder of his valuable work.

Published 8-May-2023

‘Smiling for Smiddy’: Ride In Memory of Adam Smiddy a Success

It’s been 10 years since the park located in the heart of Milton’s Park Road precinct was renamed in honour of Adam Smiddy’s memory. Celebrating this milestone, a group of riders embarked on a river loop ride from the Adam Smiddy Park on 14 March 2019.

Adam Smiddy, a talented triathlete and respected physiotherapist, died from an aggressive melanoma in 2006. It was one of his unrealised dreams to go on a ride from Brisbane to his hometown in Home Hill.

The late Adam Smiddy (Photo credit: Smiling for Smiddy/Facebook)

Fulfilling this dream, his triathlon coach Mark Smoothy and two other mates Ron Steel and Oliver Bodak ventured into a 1,600-km bike from Brisbane to Home Hill ride six weeks after Smiddy’s passing. They successfully raised $24,000 for cancer research in the process.

Little did they know that this humble ride in memory of a mate will grow into a wonderful series of cycling, swim and triathlon challenges that will raise funds to support cancer research at Mater Hospital.

Over the past 12 years, ‘Smiling for Smiddy’ participants and supporters have raised more than $9 million for cancer research. The goal is to help raise additional $1,000,000 in 2019.

The recent bike ride concluded at Savoir Faire, opposite the Adam Smiddy park, for breakfast compliments of La Dolce Vita. The breakfast was 100 percent donated free of charge by the cafe to show their support for the event.

Left to right: Roberto Semsara, Nigel Harris, Lesley Ray, David Smiddy, Peter Smith (Photo credit: Smiling for Smiddy/Facebook)

Adam’s dad David Smiddy joined the event, along with Mark Smooty and Rowan Foster as well as Mater Foundation CEO Nigel Harris and Mater Foundation Executive Director of Philanthropy Lesley Ray.

Peter Smith, chair of Savoir Faire, announced that the weekly Wednesday Smiddy river loop riders’ refreshment purchases at La Dolce Vita would be matched and donated back to Mater Smiling for Smiddy.

The Team Smiddy is currently enlisting nine riders for the Reverse Bottlemart Smiddy Challenge on 23-31 August 2019, which will start in Tamworth and will conclude in Brisbane.

The goal of the next bike ride is to raise $5,000 for cancer research. If you’re up for this big challenge, get further information or register at the Smiddy website.