Thursday 24 May 2018

'If you can't stand up, stand out' - Conor McGregor lauds inspirational teenager Ian O'Connell after moving Late Late show appearance

Conor McGregor met Ian O'Connell at the Three Arena last night
Conor McGregor met Ian O'Connell at the Three Arena last night
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Teenager Ian O'Connell was left paralysed from the neck down after falling from his bike at Killarney National Park when he was 16 years old and his response to his misfortune has been inspiring.

Appearing on The Late Late Show on Friday night, he described his reaction to the news that he had broken his neck and would be confined to a wheelchair.

"I said to myself 'Ian, there's not much you can do here. Crying isn't going to make me stand up and run around the place again.' I always say to myself if you can't stand up, stand out."

Asked about people who inspire him, O'Connell pinpointed former UFC champion Conor McGregor and his dedication to the craft of Mixed Martial Arts.

Among those to be inspired by Ian's story was The Notorious himself and he was delighted when he bumped into his young fan at the BAMMA 35 event in Dublin's Three Arena last night.

McGregor wrote on Instagram: "Watching the Late Late show last night and on comes this young man @ianoconnell321!  I was blown away by him and his attitude to life and in facing adversity!  Truly blown away! Then tonight, by complete chance, I bumped into him at an event and end up getting to watch the main event fight ringside with him!

"What a night! Thank you Ian it was great to meet you my brother, you are some man!

"Your quote literally blew me away! “If you can’t stand up, STAND OUT!” What a legend!  I think I speak for every Irish man and woman that watched you on the Late Late show last night by saying you are a true inspiration to us!

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