Nine-year-old Luke Barrett and his brother Rhys, aged 6, came up with the idea when the families and friends of three men from the northside of Cork City got together to honour their memories by raising funds for Marymount Hospice.
The Barrett boys’ grandfather, Christy O’Mahony, was one of the men who all passed away from cancer this year, honoured through the BCT Trust. The other men, who used Marymount’s facilities in their final days, were Barry Cotter and Theo O’Callaghan.
Ideas for raising funds came thick and fast, and Luke and Rhys decided to honour their granddad with a cycling event that had a special significance — they would cycle a mile for every year they spent with their grandfather.
Yesterday was a bittersweet day for their mum, Lisa, remembering her father and watching her sons pedal out with the peloton at the starting line near Blackrock Castle. “It’s fantastic that so many children of all ages turned out. The cycle came about because my two sons, Luke and Rhys, lost their grandad in October and when they heard about the BCT Trust and that all the money raised was for Marymount they wanted to do an event. They came up with doing a cycle. They decided they would cycle a mile for every year their grandad was in their lives,” she said.
“As soon as the idea went out on the BCT Trust Facebook page more and more children got involved. It’s brilliant and it gives the children a sense of pride in what they have done and in some of their cases they experienced firsthand the care and support given by the brilliant staff of Marymount.”
Yesterday’s cycle was the second of three big events for the BCT Trust, raising €1,600. The first was a ‘plank challenge’ held at Urban Fitness gym in Knocknaheeny last Wednesday, which raised over €500.
The third fundraiser will be the ‘Monster Marymount Challenge’ this Friday at the River Lane Bar, Blarney Street, with head shaves, chest waxes, music, games, and entertainment.