Over €130,000 raised for Cork man paralysed after fall during Storm Emma

Olivia Kelleher

A young man who was paralysed from the chest down after he fell while out in the snow with friends earlier this year is determined to return to his native Cork in the next few months following the completion of his treatment at the National Rehabilitation Hospital.

Jack O'Driscoll (20) was in Lotabeg in Mayfield, Cork city on March 1 when a fall, prior to the red alert in Storm Emma, resulted in him being paralysed.

Jack O'Driscoll. Photo: GoFundMe

He was brought to Cork University Hospital immediately after the accident. However, the severity of his injury required him to be transferred to Dublin to undergo surgery in the Mater Hospital.

He is currently working hard with the medical team at the National Rehabilitation Hospital in Dun Laoghaire to enable him to improve his quality of life.

More than €130,000 was raised on a Go Fund Me Page and now Mayfield GAA club has stepped in to fundraise as Jack will need private treatments, possibly overseas, to ensure the best outcome. Jack's house will also have to be renovated to adapt to his circumstances.

Pat Peate, of the Jack of Driscoll Fund at the GAA club, says that Jack's tenacity and courage have been inspirational to all those who know him.

"His motto would be 'onwards and upwards.' He is really positive for such a young man. He is determined this won't hold him back. He is determined to have the best life forward going forward. He has fantastic support from the family which is a huge boost to him."

Mr Peate has asked the GAA and general sporting community to support a Golf Classic planned for late August with events in Fota Golf Course, Cork Golf Course, and Castlemartyr Golf Course.

Jack has very little movement below the chest and the medical opinion is that intensive rehab over the next few years may enable him to regain the use of his arms, elbows and possibly his wrists and hands.

Jack was involved in hurling and football with Mayfield GAA club and St Mary's AFC and showed great skill on the pitch. It is understood the CIT engineering student had been out for a walk in the snow and was at a local sports field when the freak accident occurred.

The alarm was raised and emergency services including HSE paramedics and a unit of Cork City Fire Brigade rushed to the scene. He was placed on a spinal support board to prevent further movement.

Contributions can continue to be made to the Go Fund Me page here.

Anybody who would like to get involved in the golf events can contact Mayfield GAA club or email Pat Peate at patpeate@yahoo.ie


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