'I was terrified': Former councillor battling cancer happy to be home after fears of contracting coronavirus

'I was terrified': Former councillor battling cancer happy to be home after fears of contracting coronavirus
Kevin Conway running his election campaign for the hospital ward at the Cork University Hospital last year. Picture Dan Linehan

A CANCER patient and former councillor revealed how a hospital admission left him "terrified" for his life due to fears around coronavirus.

Kevin Conway from Blarney confessed to feeling like he had cheated death after being discharged from hospital following concerns that if he contracted Covid-19 it would take his life.

“I was absolutely terrified going into that hospital that I would never come out again,” the 61-year old said following his release from CUH.

“I begged the consultant to get me out of that hospital as soon as possible. If I contracted Covid-19 there was a very high chance that I wouldn’t come back from it.” 

The former Cork City North West candidate is no stranger to self-isolation.

Kevin Conway at Cork University Hospital. Picture Dan Linehan
Kevin Conway at Cork University Hospital. Picture Dan Linehan

He even went as far as running an election campaign from his hospital bed in the summer of last year. While the campaign was unsuccessful his fight to get back on his feet paid dividends.

Not long after the elections Mr Conway, who suffers from multiple myeloma, a condition causing cancer in the bone marrow, underwent a stem cell transplant to save his life.

The potential of contracting coronavirus posed another threat to his fighting spirit. However, he said that it is as a result of people’s efforts that he is still here today. He urged the public to continue following government advice.

“I knew someone who was fit and healthy who broke a few bones and ended up contracting Covid-19 in hospital. This worried me greatly.” Kevin said he was relieved to be discharged from hospital and remarked that he is taking life one day at a time.

“Just like with coronavirus there are strides being made in cancer treatments all the time. The possibility of me being cancer-free are limited. 

"However, we won’t rule out that possibility because it’s always there. Again, just like with coronavirus it’s only a matter of time until they come up with the solutions. Hopefully, I’ll be able to hang around long enough for the solution to come in time for me but I don’t want to think that far ahead.” 

He pleaded with the public to continue obeying restrictions so that more lives can be protected.

“I sympathise with the people who don’t have the space and realise this is very difficult for them,” he said.

“We may not agree with everything that’s being done but all the figures indicate that progress is being made so please just stick with it for another short period of time. I think it’s important now that we return to that community culture. The bible tells us to think of our neighbour. 

"Whether we are a christian or not this still rings true. You might be fine, that might be indisputable but how long will you be fine and how much of a risk are you willing to take? Right now we all need to be there for each other.” 

He thanked his community for their ongoing support through this difficult period.

Kevin has overcome a number of devastating obstacles in the last number of years including a diagnosis with sepsis in 2018 that left his life hanging in the balance.

Despite this setback he continued to deal with issues from constituents.

Kevin said he can’t see himself returning to politics anytime soon. Nonetheless, the 61-year old added that we have no idea what the future holds.

“At the moment that doesn’t look likely but everyday brings something different so you just never know.”

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