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Transplant success stories at family run

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Colin Kavangh, Mary Behan and Philip Kavanagh at the Irish Kidney Association's Run for a Life family fun run sponsored by Astellas Pharma Co

Colin Kavangh, Mary Behan and Philip Kavanagh at the Irish Kidney Association's Run for a Life family fun run sponsored by Astellas Pharma Co

Colin Kavangh, Mary Behan and Philip Kavanagh at the Irish Kidney Association's Run for a Life family fun run sponsored by Astellas Pharma Co

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Wicklow was well represented at the recent Irish Kidney Association 'Run for a Life' event.

The family fun run served to highlight the work of the organisation and the importance of organ donation.

The fun event offered participants of varying levels of fitness the option of walking, jogging or running competitively in either a chip timed distance of 2.5km, 5km or 10km.

Arklow man Philip Kavanagh, who underwent a successful kidney transplant in 2008, was present for the event and has been a keen participant in many running events since his new lease of life.

Philip triumphed this year at the European Transplant and Dialysis Sports Championships and brought home two medals from Krakow.

One of the day's success stories was Tony Gartland who hails from the Wicklow/Carlow border and runs with Slí Cualann club.

Tony, who is a multi World Transplant Games medal winner, took first place in the 2.5km category crossing the line in an exceptional time of 10:22.

His fitness and running success are an inspiration and Tony has been winning medals all over the world since he became the first ever liver transplant patient at St. Vincent's Hospital more than 20 years ago.

Race Organiser, Colin White said that the event was a great success and paid tribute to all involved,

'This year's Run For a Life was a great family day out. There were so many inspiring stories shared, the enthusiasm of our wonderful volunteers ensured that everyone enjoyed the experience.'

He added that the support of well known personalities such as Minister Leo Varadkar 'helped give real prominence to the importance and value of organ donation and transplantation'.

For an organ donor card Freetext the word DONOR to 50050 or visit website www.ika.ie An organ donor card can be downloaded on smartphones by searching for 'Donor ECard'.


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