Killarney walks tall in aid of brave local young people

Aoife Cooper, Martina Cronin, Sharon Cooper, Marie and Norrita Cronin
participating in the Killarney Valley Classic and Vintage Car Club Charity Walk in aid of Ian O’Connell Fund and Louise Lynch Fund through the Fossa Way and National Park, Killarney, on Friday. Photos by Michelle Cooper Galvin
Aoife Cooper, Martina Cronin, Sharon Cooper, Marie and Norrita Cronin participating in the Killarney Valley Classic and Vintage Car Club Charity Walk in aid of Ian O’Connell Fund and Louise Lynch Fund through the Fossa Way and National Park, Killarney, on Friday. Photos by Michelle Cooper Galvin
Colm O’Connor, Aine and Roisin O’Sullivan and Grace O’Connor
Gavin, Aaron, Louise, Kensa and Pat Barry
Aine and Tim Condon
Tara McSherry, Treasa O’Sullivan and Pat Fitzgerald
Ollie and Paul Keogh

Sinead Kelleher

The bravery of two young Killarney people, Ian O'Connell and Louise Lynch, inspired hundreds to turn out last week to a take part in a fundraising walk for both.

The traditional walk, organised by the Killarney Valley Classic and Vintage Club, this year raised funds for the Ian O'Connell Trust Fund and the Louise Lynch Trust Fund.

Ian O'Connell was seriously injured in a cycling accident in Killarney National Park which left him wheelchair-bound. Despite the extent of his injuries, the Killarney teenager has proven to be a tower of strength and has not left his injuries knock him back. 

Killarney woman Louise Lynch is also facing a long road to recovery following a traffic accident in Spain. 

PRO of the Killarney Valley Classic and Vintage Club, Tom Leslie, said they decided to help out these two inspirational Killarney people this year.

"We help different charities, but this year we chose the two local people as it is close to home," he said. 

Hundreds turned out to take part in a 5k or 10k Fossa Way walk last Friday, including many young children who cycled their new Christmas bikes along the route. The bright and unseasonably winter conditions helped bring out a strong contingent from the local community, many of whom wanted to help out these two young people as they make their way to a full recovery. 

In previous years the walk has raised substantial funds for the Kerry Cork Health Link Bus and this year it is hoped that substantial funds have also been raised to help Louise and Ian. 

The annual walk was in fact one of the first events organised by the Killarney Valley Classic and Vintage Club, and this year marked the sixth edition of the walk. 

Mr Leslie thanked everyone for coming out and supporting the worthy cause. "We had a lovely day and it was great to see so many people out enjoying the event," he said. 

The club also recently donated €1,000 to the Ian O'Connell Trust Fund - the proceeds of  a Model Farm day at the Ross Hotel in Killarney.

Kerryman

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