Tuesday 23 April 2019

Benefit match arranged for Donabate teen who suffered brain injuries

Adam McDonnell
Adam McDonnell

Hubert Murphy

Former coaches and players at Drogheda Boys have come together to organise a benefit match for Adam McDonnell, the young man from Donabate who went to school in Swords and suffered serious brain injuries following an altercation outside a Swords nightclub in September 2018.

The incident left him with critical head injuries.

Adam was just 17 at the time and an emergency operation was performed in Beaumont Hospital, removing a large portion of Adam's skull in an attempt to reduce the swelling on his brain. He was placed in an induced coma for two weeks and spent four weeks on support systems to keep him alive.

The operation went well, but there was a fear that he would be confined to a wheelchair for life. At that stage he was unable to feed himself, couldn't talk or walk and was paralysed down the right hand side of his body.

Then Adam's great courage kicked in and within four months of the start of his recovery in Beaumont Hospital's ICU, he could eat by himself, could talk and began to walk with the help of a zimmer frame.

He is now on a rehabilitation course in the National Rehabilitation Hospital in Dun Laoghaire where he is receiving physical therapy to strengthen his legs - as well as speech and memory therapy.

When he gets home, he will continue to need plenty of support and that's where his friends and coaches have stepped in.

Olan Flanagan, Austin Byrne, Carl Kirwan, Shane Byrne, Andy Byrne and Neil Flanagan and Drogheda Boys FC have organised a Class of 2016 to take on a Class of 2014 side at United Park on Easter Saturday, April 20th, with the game likely to take place around 11.30am/noon.

The response from the players has been fantastic and nearly all have confirmed they will play.

A raffle will also take place with a number of great prizes organised, a servicing pack from Malones Toyota, Irish tickets and signed jersey from the FAI, Drogs jersey from DUFC and others and plenty of room for more.

They had been looking at staging the game in Marley's Lane but Drogheda stepped in and offered the ground and they were delighted when Utd chairman Conor Hoey took the time to go and visit Adam in Dun Laoighre.

They're also allowing the organisers to have a bucket collection at one of their home games beforehand. Drogheda Boys are also allowing a bucket collection at their games over one of the weekends leading up to it too.

Fingal Independent