Remembering how the ice bucket challenge in 2014 really made a splash

Co-founder Pat Quinn, who was diagnosed with motor neurone disease aged 30, has passed away. Part of his incredible legacy is the unforgettable Ice bucket challenge, which raised €1.7m in Ireland alone.
Remembering how the ice bucket challenge in 2014 really made a splash

2014 Rose of Tralee Maria Walsh doing the ice bucket challenge in the Tralee Town Park fountain. Picture: Domnick Walsh / Eye Focus LTD

The co-founder of the viral “ice bucket challenge”, which has raised more than €168 million worldwide for research into motor neurone disease, has died at the age of 37.

Pat Quinn was diagnosed with motor neurone disease – known as Lou Gehrig’s disease or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) in the US – in 2013, a month after his 30th birthday.

In 2014, Mr Quinn saw the ice bucket challenge on the social media feed of professional golfer Chris Kennedy, who first dared his wife’s cousin Jeanette Senerchia to take a bucket of ice water, dump it over her head, post a video on social media and ask others to do the same or to make a donation to charity. Ms Senerchia’s husband had the disease.

Pat Quinn, a co-founder of the viral ice bucket challenge, has died at the age of 37. Picture: Scott Kauffman/The ALS Association via AP
Pat Quinn, a co-founder of the viral ice bucket challenge, has died at the age of 37. Picture: Scott Kauffman/The ALS Association via AP

Mr Quinn and co-founder Pete Frates, along with their teams of supporters, helped popularise the ice bucket challenge in 2014, which asked those challenged to take a bucket of ice water, dump it over their head, post a video on social media and ask others to do the same and make a donation to charity.

Many Irish people embraced the challenge in 2014, with ordinary families and celebrities alike undergoing a dunking in the name of charity. Ice cube sales soared and so too did donations to the Irish Motor Neurone Disease Association (IMNDA). The Ice Bucket Challenge raised over €1.7 million in Ireland alone. IMNDA paid tribute to Mr Quinn for the incredible difference he made.

“We will be eternally grateful to Patrick Quinn, and all who participated in this phenomenon. He changed the course of history for this underfunded disease and his legacy will continue to support hundreds of people living with MND in Ireland.” 

Here are some of the videos that we loved from that summer.

BREAKINGNEWS.IE 

 

...which nominated...

DEIRDRE O’SHAUGHNESSY 

 

...who nominated… 

MIRIAM O’CALLAGHAN 

 

...who shared her experience with Olivan Callanan, who was nominated by… 

SHARON NÍ BHEOLAIN 

 

...who was challenged by… 

JENNY GREEN 

 

...who nominated...

JOE DUFFY 

 

...who challenged… 

PAT KENNY 

 

Meanwhile on live TV… 

DAITHI O’SE 

.

...the Rose of Tralee host nominated… 

RAY DARCY, MARTY WHELAN, AND RYAN TUBRIDY 

 

...and while we’re in Kerry… 

2014 ROSE OF TRALEE MARIA WALSH 

 

Other Irish celebrities who took part include:

CHRIS O’DOWD 

 

He used the challenge as an opportunity to announce he and wife Dawn O’Porter were expecting a baby.

BRIAN O’DRISCOLL 

AMY HUBERMAN

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