Steve Green beats barriers to be our Wolves superfan
Eight years ago, former Royal Air Force man and Wolves fan Steve Green went through a life-changing accident, which left him paralysed from the chest down.
But love for the old gold and black was not lost. If anything, it grew stronger.
After a spinal injury suffered in a motorbike crash in May 2011, the 38-year-old gets around in a wheelchair, following his beloved Wanderers up and down the country with the help of his two children – seven-year-old Carlos and 12-year-old Lucia.
The pair were recognised recently by Wolves, being among 10 winners of the club’s Carer of the Season award.
And now proud dad Steve is in the spotlight for his heroic efforts as he is this year’s recipient of the Express & Star Wolves Fan of the Year award.
On his incredible journey and unwavering support for Wolves, Steve said: “The accident was eight years ago this Friday.
“I was on the way to a job interview in Wolverhampton, but my motorbike had a mechanical failure, and I hit a signpost which left me paralysed from the chest down.
“I ended up in intensive care for five weeks, then was transferred to a spinal specialist where I was for nearly four months.
“I was still serving in the Royal Air Force at the time, so I then went to a military rehab and it was, all in all, two years of rehab.
“Once I was discharged from the RAF though, I got a job pretty much straight away as an aircraft engineer for the army.
“I might push it a bit at times now, especially with the football, travelling to and from games from Wiltshire.
“Home games are about a 190-mile round-trip. And I’ve clocked up nearly 9,000 miles in total this season.But I’ve had a season ticket with my dad, Dennis, since 1995 and met a lot of good friends through the club.
“I’ve always been the same, trying to get to as many games as I can every season.”
Steve’s love affair with Wolves began through his dad as a youngster.
And following the club saw him meet Mari, the mother of Carlos and Lucia. Steve and Mari are now divorced, but the family bond is still strong with their shared passion for Wolves.
Carlos and Lucia help make his matchday experience easier by getting his wheelchair out of the car and setting it up at home and away matches.
“The kids have both got season tickets now. We travel to games together.
“It’s still a big family thing,” said Steve.
“We’ve kept on good terms, and seeing the kids have the joy I had as a kid is amazing.
“In my day, Wolves were on the way back up. Now, they can enjoy players like Joao Moutinho and Ruben Neves. They love it.”
Steve, astonishingly, is actually a bit disappointed to have only travelled 9,000 miles following Wolves this season just gone.
He said he did around 13,000 as Wolves won the Championship, but a spell in hospital meant he had to miss some games this year.
“I’m a little bit annoyed I had to miss eight weeks of the season, but sometimes health takes over,” said Steve, who lives in Wootton Bassett.
“I had a pressure sore on my hip, so I had to have a massive skin graft – they cut from my hip to my thigh, and took a skin graft from there and put it over the hip bone.
“The first four weeks were just staying in bed, and then building up to getting back in my wheelchair.
“Touch wood, I’ve had no problems since.
“As soon as that was done, I got released on the Friday, I went and travelled down to Southampton for the game with my dad and the kids on the Saturday.”
It is fair to say Steve has had some sizeable obstacles thrown his way.
But Wolves’ success under Nuno Espirito Santo over the past couple of years has filled him with joy.
“This year, you can hardly put it into words,” Steve added.
“I never thought I’d come out of places like Anfield being disappointed we hadn’t got three points.
“And I still can’t believe we’ve got players like Moutinho.
“I think I might wake up soon and it not be real.
“To get the award is unbelievable, especially after the kids winning Carer of the Season. I’m really proud of them.”