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Fingal duo setting off to World Transplant Games

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Peter Heffernan from Skerries, who is off to the World Transplant Games, with his son Cian and former Republic of Ireland star Niall Quinn.

Peter Heffernan from Skerries, who is off to the World Transplant Games, with his son Cian and former Republic of Ireland star Niall Quinn.

Peter Heffernan from Skerries, who is off to the World Transplant Games, with his son Cian and former Republic of Ireland star Niall Quinn.

fingalindependent

TWO FINGAL men are gearing up for their departure to one of the most inspirational sports events in the world.

TWO FINGAL men are gearing up for their departure to one of the most inspirational sports events in the world.

Competitor Peter Heffernan from Skerries, who had a kidney transplant two years ago, and team manager Colin White from Balbriggan are bound for the 19th World Transplant Games which take place in Durban, South Africa from July 28 to August 4.

'We have been training four or five times a week in ALSAA and of course the sea,' said swimmer Peter, who will be competing in the 50m and 100m Freestyle, 50m and 100m Backstroke and 50m Butterfly.

'I will be flying out with my wife Patricia Carty and my sons Pearce (20) and Cian (17) to South Africa, and it will be fantastic to have their support throughout the games, and then stay and have a dream holiday we've always wanted.'

The Skerries man had renal problems since he was a teenager, but it wasn't until he was 50 that he had to start kidney dialysis and start the wait for a new kidney.

'When one of my kidneys reached only 15 per cent function, that's when it was time to take serious action,' he told the Fingal Independent. 'The first thing that happens is you lose energy, as it really saps you, and your diet is severely restricted, but a transplant really does give you a whole new life, and I definitely feel healthier now than before dialysis.'

Peter is no stranger to competing in transplant games as this is his fourth since his kidney troubles began.

'We are all one big family and the camaraderie is tremendous amongst those who take part,' said Peter, an engineer, who was on dialysis for five years before he got a donor.

'The big thing about competing is it raises awareness of transplants and donations, shows what a gift of life it is, and helps you to keep healthy, which is very important after a transplant.'


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