James raises €20k for his mountain rescuers

Stephen Fernane

It is exactly a year since Killarney man James Cahill fell 40 feet in a horrifying accident while descending Carrauntoohill's treacherous 'Zig Zags'.

The Kerry Mountain Rescue Team (KMRT) came to his assistance that day as he lay badly injured on a cold, wet mountain and following months of rehab at the National Recovery Hospital, James decided to organise a fundraising walk to say 'thank you' to KMRT for saving his life.

Over 1000 people answered James' call at Muckross Gardens on June 10 for a 7km walk - a walk James managed to partake in for a short distance - as everyone shared in a collective show of gratitude to KMRT.

Fast forward to The Torc Hotel on Tuesday evening and the presentation of a cheque for €20,050 to KMRT which will go some way towards providing them with vital new equipment to help save others.

"I just wanted to do something to thank them for what they did on that day. I was delighted with the turnout and the response from the people of Kerry. It just shows you how much people appreciate the work of KMRT, and I'm delighted to be able to do this for them," James said.

As part of the rescue operation, 15 members of KMRT helped lower James to Ard na Locha from where he was airlifted to Kerry University Hospital by the Rescue 115 Coastguard helicopter.

"It's certainly one of the most significant fundraisers we've had given the huge effort James and his family have gone to," KMRT PRO Colm Burke said.

"They really got the public on board and this is a fantastic amount of money for us.

"We're very grateful to everyone who got involved and James' efforts were made very public which helped generate huge interest.

"We have high running costs and this money will go towards medical and training equipment which is badly needed. It's very much appreciated," Colm added.


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