Danny Crowley Memorial Swim Raises €12,000
€12,000 was raised for the Mercy Hospital Foundation’s Kids + Teens Appeal on Christmas Day thanks to a group of students from Carrigaline Community School, who along with their families and friends, and many more braved the chilly waters at Myrtleville Beach. The atmosphere on Myrtleville Beach on the morning of the swim was electric with a turnout of about 500 people to show their support, including almost 250 brave swimmers – many of whom participated in the now annual swim for the very first time - in memory of Danny Crowley, who passed away after a long battle with Leukaemia in November 2013.
At 10.30am 50 red and white balloons (representing Danny’s love of Arsenal and Cork) were released in Danny’s memory, and swimmers ran towards the water for their dip! Funds raised will go to the Mercy Hospital Children’s Leukaemia unit, where Danny spent a significant amount of time when having treatment in 2013. The team there, led by Dr Clodagh Ryan, go to enormous effort to make this unit as child friendly as possible, and Danny’s family said “for Danny, going to the Mercy was like being at home and that is a testament to their level of care.” This unit in the Mercy also provides the nursing outreach oncology service where nurses visit patients’ homes to check bloods, give lighter chemo etc.
The first Carrigaline Christmas Day Charity Swim in memory of Danny was organised by his friends in December 2013, when 40 swimmers took the plunge. In 2014, 73 people took part, 2015 saw 146 people take the plunge, and this year’s swim was the biggest to date. Since its inception this charity swim has raised a tremendous €41,500. As well as the annual Christmas Day Swims, 190 students from Carrigaline Community School took part in a Fun Walk in April 2014, raising €5,385 in Danny’s memory for The Mercy Kids + Teens Appeal.
Danny’s mother, Majella Crowley thanked everyone who has contributed and supported this fundraising effort in any way. She said “Christmas day is a busy family day with lots of visiting and cooking to be done, so it takes significant rescheduling to fit in a swim as well. We, Danny’s family, really appreciate this great turnout and support, keeping his memory very much alive! It was especially great to see Danny’s friends leading this fundraising event.
Thanks to everyone who came out - from Danny’s friends and neighbours, to the teachers and families from his Gaelscoil class, to the GAA, soccer and basketball clubs where he enjoyed the best times of his life as he loved sport. Many new school friends came, in particular from Presentation Brothers College and it was great to see them; as well as those who came out who never knew Danny, but came to show their support and solidarity.”
She added “Those of you who knew Danny would know that he would have been the first in to the water if he were around. In fact, it would have been very probable that he would have worn a green mankini as he was a Borat fan in his day!”
Special thanks must go to the organising committee who have led this event for the last four years, Jennifer Kelleher and Deborah Lonergan from Mano Mano Barbers in Carrigaline; Brother Martin Kennelly from Presentation Brothers for his significant support and fundraising; Melvin of KWP printers who has supplied the sponsorship cards and posters free of charge; Timmy Healy of PJ Hegarty & Co who supplied all the refreshments on Christmas morning, plus donations from Alice Coniry and Damien Craven; the Cork Balloon Company who sponsored the balloons; Howard Crowdy who took the official pictures on the day; Crosshaven Coastguard and the local community officer who kept a close eye on proceedings and Cian Dalton photography.
For more information on The Mercy Kids + Teens Appeal visit http://www.mercyfundraising.ie.