Organ Donor Awareness Week 2018

Tipp dad whose life was “turned upside down” following Nephrotic Syndrome diagnosis raising money for Irish Kidney Association

Niamh Dillon

Reporter:

Niamh Dillon

Email:

niamh.dillon@tipperarystar.ie

Tipperary dad whose life was “turned upside down” following Nephrotic Syndrome diagnosis raising money for Irish Kidney Association

Owen Hanrahan from Grangemockler is organising a Motorcade and Motor exhibition at The Hub at Cillin Hill, Kilkenny on Sunday 8 April from 12-4.30pm

A Tipperary man who had his life “turned upside down” following a shock diagnosis of kidney failure in 2016 is calling on all “proud truck, car or bike owners” in Tipperary and Kilkenny to take part in a charity Motorcade and Motor exhibition for the Irish Kidney Association this April.

Owen Hanahran from Grangemockler was an active father of three with his own haulage business in Kilkenny when he began feeling unwell in early 2016 going from a “fit and active man who was always pulling and dragging to feeling weak and constantly tired.”

“It struck home how fragile life is and how it can all change in a few weeks. I had been a very healthy, strong man, always on the go. When the doctor told me I had Nephrotic Syndrome and was in kidney failure everything turned upside down," explains Mr Hanrahan to the Tipperary Star.

Following his diagnosis, the 39 year old spent over 10 weeks in hospital in Waterford where his weight soared from 11 and half stone to 15 stone due to fluid retention while his kidney function declined to less than 16 percent.

During his recovery, Mr Hanrahan was forced to wind down his business, adding further financial pressure on the family. However in a short space of time the local community banded together to organise a truck run to help support the young family, raising a total of €17,000.

“I was self employed but I couldn’t keep the business going when I got sick so that was another pressure on the family. It was an incredibly stressful time for everyone but the local branch of the Irish Kidney Association in Kilkenny and the local community were a godsend.”

“I was overwhelmed and humbled by the support I received from my friends and local community since my diagnosis. As someone who worked hard all my life it was difficult to have to succumb to my illness and wind my business down. However, I hope that I will be able to receive a life changing kidney transplant which will help turn things around for me and my family. I would encourage everyone to consider organ donation, as like me, you never know when organ failure might visit a member of your family. Organ donation saves lives. It is such a selfless decision for families to donate a loved ones organs so that other people like myself can benefit from the gift of life.”

“I, with the support of friends and some members of the Kilkenny Branch of the Irish Kidney Association, including Seamus and Arlene Carrigan, are making plans for a Motorcade and Motor exhibition at The Hub at Cillin Hill, Kilkenny which will include swift cars, trucks and motorbikes to raise funds for the Irish Kidney Association and awareness about organ donation. We're asking any proud truck, bike or car owners to come out on the day and join in to help raise much needed funds for the IKA.”

Further details of the event which will be held on Sunday, 8th April from 12-4.30pm at the end of Organ Donor Awareness Week 2018, are to be advised. Anyone who would like to take part with an exhibition stand or enter a vehicle can email kilkennybigevent@outlook.com or contact Owen Hanrahan on 083 8785938.