pportunity to experience the great work of the heart and stroke charity Croi. Two weeks ago my husband and I were on a Tauck Tour, “The Best of Ireland”, from the United States. Our tour stopped for approximately two hours to walk the streets of Galway, enjoy the Sunday activity, and find some lunch.
While walking my husband mentioned that he wasn’t feeling very good. We had some of your delicious seafood chowder and on the way back to the bus he again commented that he was feeling worse and that maybe he was having a heart attack.
We decided to immediately go to the hospital. A taxi rushed us to the University Hospital Galway and he went in while I paid the taxi.
By the time I got into the hospital he was already being cared for and shortly after that, the decision was taken to admit him to the cardiac care unit.
There he had an angioplasty, stent placed and was back in his room; all this in less than five hours! He did have a small heart attack and would have to stay in the hospital for at least five days unless it was necessary for more to be done. By the way, the nurses and care there were wonderful.
I had no idea where I would stay when a nurse suggested Croi. She called and they did have room for me in one of their patient support apartments. Upon arrival I was warmly greeted by a Croi staff member, Betsy Egan, who was very kind and showed me the wonderful, spotlessly clean, apartment that was extremely well equipped with everything anybody would desire; even a washer and dryer.
There was also a special telephone that would summon the service of a taxi company that had a special rate for residents at the Croi Centre. Shortly after that CEO Neil Johnson stopped by to see how I was doing and inquire if I needed anything.
I had forgotten to pick up milk on the way in and he went to get some for me. He also mentioned that if I needed anything at the store or elsewhere that they could find somebody on the staff to take me.
Then a day later another Croi staff member Paul Earley stopped in to see how I was and he ended up taking me to an ATM machine and the grocery store and was most helpful. Everybody was so kind and caring-it was such a comfort in a very unsettling time for somebody completely ignorant of the area or the country. There was no rush for me to leave. Also, the security was tremendous, I never felt anxious at any time during my stay.
Croi is a wonderful organisation. They do so much to help prevent heart and stoke occurrences and to rehabilitate those that have been affected by them. They now even offer a Master degree, in conjunctions with the university, in that field for those interested. It is world class.
Galway and Ireland should be very proud to have it here. I hope more areas and countries follow suit. (The absolute best thing about Croi, though, was the kindness and caring nature of everybody that works there. ) There was no charge for this service, just a request for a donation. My sincere thanks to everybody at Croi. You were a God send.