Sunday 21 January 2018

Family home saved by community

Barry Duggan

A MOTHER whose mortgage repayments fell into arrears following the tragic death of her partner will not lose her family home after a fund from neighbouring communities raised more than €20,000.

Breda Heelan from Ballinlough, Kilteely, Co Limerick has paid a heartfelt tribute to all those who raised €22,000 so that she and her two daughters could continue to live in their cottage.

Last May, Breda's partner, Ged -- an experienced hunter gun club member -- slipped and broke his leg in a field. He tried to use his gun to prop himself up, but it went off and struck an artery. He bled to death.

Breda said the family was "devastated".

Ged's mortgage protection did not cover his death and the diabetic had no life assurance. Breda, who was on disability allowance, could not afford to pay the mortgage.

The bank granted her a six-month break on repayments. Admitting she was in "dire financial straits", she approached a retired Limerick county councillor, Eddie Creighton.

Mr Creighton and Gerard Mitchell, a local auctioneer, organised a fund and donations came from across east Limerick.

"Within five or six weeks they raised over €22,000 -- it was absolutely unbelievable," Breda said.

"I would like to thank each and everyone who gave to the fund, it was fantastic.

"Ged is missed terribly, but this has given us the strength to carry on -- and a roof over our heads."

Irish Independent

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