An ice bucket challenge tinged with sadness

School children got top marks for drenching their teachers in a very special ice bucket challenge tinged with sadness.

An ice bucket challenge tinged with sadness

The sixth-class students of Ovens National School in Co Cork were given special permission to dump several buckets of water over the school’s teaching staff on Friday in a fundraiser for the Irish Motor Neurone Disease Association (IMNDA).

But while everyone had great fun watching their teachers get soaked, they also paused to remember the school’s former principal, Denis Lynch, who died from motor neurone disease earlier this year.

Principal Eoghan Hyde said the staff were delighted to subject themselves to a soaking in his memory.

Mr Lynch, who retired as principal in 2001 after 43 years service to the school, died last January after battling MND for some time.

Described as the school’s father figure, he served as a class teacher, a teaching principal and administrative principal during his lengthy and distinguished career at Ovens NS.

He was remembered as a great teacher, who loved teaching maths and Irish, and who promoted a love of and an appreciation for nature and music.

The IMNDA revealed last week that it had received a total of €1.4m so far from the ice bucket challenge phenomenon.

While the initial flood of donations has eased, money is still trickling in with a final figure due to be released at the end of the month.

It’s estimated that up to half a million people across Ireland have poured buckets of ice cold water over themselves.

The IMNDA said that it was now consulting with the 330 patients it works with, their families, carers and supporters, about how best to spend the money.

Every patient and user of the IMNDA service will be asked to complete a form so that the association can identify where the need is greatest.

About a quarter of the cash raised will help to fund clinical research, led by Professor Orla Hardiman of Trinity College Dublin, into the causes and treatments for MND.

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