Cork couple to run marathon at home for air ambulance following accident

Cork couple to run marathon at home for air ambulance following accident
The ICRR Air Ambulance at Rathcoole, North Cork was dispatched after Paul O'Brien fell near Fountainstown. Photo: Don MacMonagle

A Cork couple are to run a marathon within 2km of their home this weekend to raise vital funds for the Irish Community Rapid Response (ICCR) air ambulance service who came to their aid earlier this month.

Paul O’Brien, who works at Bunnyconnellan Bar and Restaurant in Myrtleville, and his wife Julie McCall were out walking near their home in the Fountainstown area just over two weeks ago, when Paul suffered an accident which he said has “changed the way he looks at things.” 

During the walk, Paul says he spotted a rope swing, and “some part of his childhood came back” and so he decided to swing on it.

However, the rope snapped and Paul fell into a stream and was knocked unconscious.

Emergency services were contacted and the air ambulance service was dispatched to the scene.

They subsequently took Paul to Cork University Hospital where he received treatment.

"I remember falling and the next thing was I woke up in hospital," he said. 

Thankfully, Paul says his injuries were not serious, and he is recovering well from the accident now.

Paul contacted the ICCR air ambulance service to thank them, and after realising that they urgently needed funds to continue operating, he decided to try to find a way to raise money for them.

The ICCR service had previously made a decision to ground the air ambulance this month due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on its community fundraising campaign, but this decision has been reversed for now, and it is currently trying to find with alternative funding streams.

“I was due to run the London Marathon this weekend and so we decided to walk a “stayathome” marathon instead,” explained Paul. 

On Saturday (April 25th) Paul and his wife will complete the marathon within 2km of their home, and they are urging people to walk or run 5km within their own 2km zone and donate to the cause.

They are hoping to raise €3,500 for the Irish Community Rapid Response (ICCR) air ambulance service.

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