Huge community support for family of tragic kayaker

 Eamonn O’Donohoe

Eamonn O’Donohoe

The tragic death of Kayaker and water enthusiast, Eamonn O’Donohoe, will be remembered through activities at Hodson Bay in the coming weeks.

Spokesperson for the organising committee, Aengus O’Rourke, has hailed the level of community support for the family of the late Kiltoom resident as "incredible". Eamonn's life will be celebrated by way of a social night in the Hodson Bay hotel on Saturday, October 7, which is expected to be attended by more than 300 people from the local community.

On March 4, 2017, kayaking and water enthusiast Eamonn O'Donohoe from Kiltoom lost his life on Lough Ree doing what he loved to do. Sadly, Eamonn left behind his loving wife Sharon (nee Ryan from Summerhill ) and three children, Sarah and twins Alex and Lucy, who have just started in Athlone Community College in recent days.

The local community, from Barrybeg to Summerhill and from Lecarrow to Brideswell, are coming together to support Sharon and her children during the October 7 activities.

Tickets are €50 each for the night. The price includes a sumptuous meal in the hotel’s first-rate Clonmacnoise Suite and entertainment by Ireland’s premier group, Bentley Boys Band. There will also be a disco after. The tickets also include placement in an exclusive draw on the night.

Mayor of Athlone and member of the organising committee, Aengus O’Rourke, said: “The local community have been chomping at the bit to do something for the family since Eamonn's tragic passing. Eamonn was idolised by his three wonderful children. He was their role model and for them to lose him so young was and remains a massive blow.

“The reaction to the memorial social night has been fantastic with people from all walks of life getting involved; selling tickets, organising sponsors, putting up posters, and lots more. We have a fantastic committee of 14 local people who have driven this idea from the start. We are now looking forward to having a good night out while supporting the O'Donohoe family at the same time.

“The event on October 7 really promises to be a fantastic night’s entertainment, and the band are the most sought after 'big' band in the country - the best in the business. The Hodson Bay Hotel always do a fantastic, professional job, so we are guaranteeing a night of good food, top entertainment, fun and friendship along with an exclusive draw to top it all off."

Tickets are selling fast, with only a small number left. Mayor O'Rourke is encouraging anyone who still needs a ticket to text him their details on (086 ) 3867484 and he will do his best to accommodate them. For those who can not attend but would like to contribute, an account has been set up in Athlone Credit Union, Monksland, under the name 'Eamonn O'Donohoe Memorial'.

There is also a canoe and kayak race being organised in Eamonn's memory by Inny Kayak Club on the day, with registration at 11am at Baysports.

More information is available on Facebook. Search for 'Lough Ree Kayak Races' or contact Bob on (086 ) 8338450.


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