Another day and plenty to report

Bone marrow transplant woman wins Gold and Bronze today and veteran retired doctor breaks world transplant games record.

Down under in Perth  at the World Transplant Games,  today (Thursday)  got off to a spectacular start as Irish (super) woman Mairead O’Mahony from Cork won both a Gold and a Bronze medal in athletics while ‘the flying doctor’ Ron Grainger from Dublin broke a world transplant games record in the 100m race securing Gold. This brings the medals tally on the penultimate day of competition for Transplant Team Ireland to 5 Gold, 5 Silver and 3 Bronze.

In the Shot Put Mairead O’Mahony from Berrings, Cork achieved her personal best of 8.96 meters before dashing off to the track to take Bronze in 1500m race with. This comes just days after she won Silver in the 5km race at her first ever games. From her neighbouring county Limerickman, John Loftus and veteran to the games, from Clarina, secured Bronze in Ball Throw but later had to declare himself ‘out’ of the 100m race due to a calf injury. While fellow veteran  Ron Grainger, a retired consultant urologist from Castleknock in Dublin who received a kidney transplant, fondly referred to by the team as ‘the flying doctor’ based on his past performances on track, broke a world transplant games record in his age category (70-79) and personal best time of 16.14 seconds and seizing Gold in the 100 meter race in the same age category as John.  Earlier in the week Ron proved his mettle in Golf  winning two medals, Silver on Monday in golf pairs and Bronze on Wednesday for his individual score.

After her double medals win this morning, (Thursday) mother of one Mairead O’Mahony (age 44) said, ” I’m in total shock. I don’t think it has sunk in yet.  It’s more than I ever could have imagined. It has been an amazing experience with a fantastic team. I want to thank my brother Willie for being my donor (bone marrow) when I was  18 years old.. It was so long ago but being here at the World Transplant Games has brought it to the forefront of how amazing it is that he literally saved my life”.

Ron Grainger was overjoyed with his Gold medal record win in the 100m sprint saying, “I trained really hard for these games and despite the fact that I hit a few bumps on the road during training, I stuck at it. I’m delighted I ran so well on a beautiful track today and hopefully setting a new time a record for my age in these games will inspirer others to pursue fitness and health. None of this would be possible but for the fact that an organ donor gave me a new life for which I am eternally grateful.”

Pat O’Sullivan from Mallow in Cork just missed out on a medal today coming in 4th place in the 100m race in his age category (50-58). On Monday Pat won a Gold medal in the Golf pairs competition partnered with fellow Corkman Hugh Nolan.   Bernadette Cox from Newbridge, Co Kildare just missed out on a Bronze medal today in the Lawn Bowls. Another venue another grandmother on Transplant Team Ireland, Teresa Smyth, from Williamstown, Galway competed in Table Tennis with Finbar O’Reagan from Dublin and while they didn’t make it to the medals podium they were content with their performance and Teresa was still delighted over winning a Silver in her Darts the day before.

Ranging in age from 36 right up to 75, the current Transplant Team Ireland panel of 10 inspirational men and 4 women travelling to Perth for the World Transplant Games have all received organ transplants including 2 liver, 2 bone marrow, and 10 kidney. They are among 1,524 participants from 46 countries, all embracing their gift of life and honouring their donors in this celebration of life through sport.

Competition at the Games is by age category and Transplant Team Ireland will have representatives  in the following eleven sports:  Cycling; Darts; Golf; Lawn Bowls; Petanque; Road Race; Swimming; Table Tennis; Ten Pin Bowling; Tennis; and Triathlon.

Each of the athletes is funding their participation in the Games (Games registration, flights, accommodation, and meals) through fundraising in the name of the Irish Kidney Association/Transplant Team Ireland, and using their own funds.  The team is proud to wear the Team Kit which, this year, has been sponsored by the Health Services Staffs Credit Union (HSSCU).

 To find out more about the World Transplant Games visit website and to find out more about members of Transplant Team Ireland and to follow their progress at the Games, you can follow the team blog;  The World Transplant Games has its own App. which contains information on competition schedules, venue locations and results, just search for WTG Event in the App store.

THE FULL IRISH PANEL IS AS FOLLOWS INCLUDING THEIR TRANSPLANT ORGAN  (their individual ‘athlete profiles’ are on the team blog ) :-

CARLOW Brian Duignan, Palatine (kidney)

Tony Gartland, Hacketstown near WICKLOW (Liver)

CORK:  Michael Kiely, Ballylanders, Mitchelstown, on LIMERICK border (living kidney donor)

Pat O’Sullivan, Mallow (kidney)

Hugh Nolan, Donaraile (kidney)

Mairead O’Mahony, Berrings (bone marrow)

GALWAY:  Teresa Smyth, Williamstown, Dunmore, Tuam (kidney)

KILDARE: Bernadette Cox, Newbridge (kidney)

LIMERICKJohn Loftus, Clarina (kidney)

MEATH: Tony Gavigan, Navan and native of LONGFORD father of deceased donor (kidney)  

TIPPERARY: Sheila Gregan, Nenagh, (kidney)

DUBLIN: Ron Grainger, Castleknock, D 15 (kidney)

Finbar O’Regan, Pearse Street, Dublin 2 (Liver)

Nick Heather, Sutton, Dublin, now living in Melbourne, Australia (bone marrow)

TEAM MANAGER, Colin White from Balbriggan, Dublin

While some of the team will be extending their time in Australia after the World Transplant Games conclude, about half of the team will return home on Sunday, 23rd April on a Qatar flight to Dublin airport’s Terminal One and their flight is scheduled to land at 1.40pm 

Individuals who wish to support organ donation are encouraged to Share their Wishes with their family and keep the reminders of their decision available by carrying the organ donor card, permitting Code 115 to be included on their driver’s licence or having the ‘digital organ donor card’ App on their smartphone. Organ Donor Cards can be requested by visiting the IKA website or  to your phone, phoning the Irish Kidney Association on 01 6205306 or Free text the word DONOR to 50050.

One thought on “Another day and plenty to report

  1. Bernie Dwyer

    Great reporting Robyn 👏, Wonderful news for the team !! So delighted for Rin Grainger, amazing achievement 👏. Bernie Dwyer

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