A 28-year-old Connemara man, who suffered a brain injury after crashing his car while drunk on Hallowe’en night in 2004, says he was “stupid and ignorant” to drink and drive.
Micilin Feeney from Lettermullen, who lost his job, fiancee and sporting life due to the road accident, says his message to people is “Never drink and drive”.
The former bricklayer was just 23 when the accident occurred in 2004. He says he made a “stupid mistake” by drink driving and has been living with the consequences ever since.
He is one of a number of people who tell the stories behind Ireland’s road carnage in a new book entitled Impact. Written by TV3 western correspondent Jenny McCudden and published by Collins Press, it is the first detailed account of the stories behind road traffic accidents in Ireland.
Some 7,935 people have died on Irish roads since 1990 and thousands of lives have been devastated as a result.
Micilin Feeney says his life was changed forever after he crashed his car into a wall on that fateful night in October.
In an interview with the author he says he was about three or four times over the limit when he set out for home. “I worked hard and played hard”, says the Connemara man wo was named “Football player of the year” for his local team before the car accident. He believes he fell asleep at the wheel. He was in a coma for four months and has no clear recollection of what happened between
October 31 2004 and February 14 2005.
The former builder, who also tells the story of how his life was irrevocably changed in the new series of road traffic advertisements on television, was given the last rites and his family were told he had a bigger chance of dying than living, according to the book.
However, he fought back and came through. He can no longer work or play gaelic football, the sport he loved, and has split up with his fiancee but he is determined to make the best of things.
Today, he give talks in schools about the dangers of drinking and driving and hopes by sharing his story he will influence others to make the correct choice.
Impact is on sale nationwide at €12.99.