Former hurler 'blessed' to welcome baby girl less than a year after life-saving kidney transplant

At just 25 years old, David Beirne's life was turned upside-down when he was diagnosed with kidney failure.

Former hurler 'blessed' to welcome baby girl less than a year after life-saving kidney transplant

At just 25 years old, David Beirne's life was turned upside-down when he was diagnosed with kidney failure.

Just over five years later, David is now looking forward to the future with his wife and his newborn daughter after having received a life-saving transplant last May.

October 2013 turned out to be life changing for David in more ways than one.

Just a week after meeting his now-wife Irene, David attended his GP with a swollen ankle which he thought was due to an injury he received while refereeing a camogie match.

A blood test carried out by the doctor revealed that his creatinine levels were extremely high signalling kidney failure.

He began a life that revolved around "relentless dialysis treatment", spending almost two-and-a-half years travelling to Galway three times a week to receive haemodialysis treatment.

On these days, David would leave the house just after 5am returning home at 1.30pm and going to work at 2pm.

During this time, Irene was a constant rock of support for David.

The pair tied the knot in July 2017 promising to love each other in sickness and in health.

The newlyweds deferred their honeymoon because David did not want to be suspended from the transplant waiting list by travelling abroad.

On their first anniversary, the couple set off on their honeymoon.

The call they had been waiting for came two months earlier and thanks to a deceased organ donor David received his transplant in May 2018.

When people ask me about how the transplant has changed my life I explain that I never asked for a new life, I only ever wanted my old life back.

Less than two weeks ago, David and Irene welcomed their first child, Ailbhe.

"We feel blessed and all our happiness was all made possible because of the family of my deceased donor," said David.

David, Irene and their baby girl, Ailbhe

David, Irene and their baby girl, Ailbhe

David himself had always carried an organ donor card and signed the back of his driving licence to be an organ donor.

Speaking during Organ Donor Awareness Week 2019 which runs until April 6, David said: "I would encourage everyone to support organ donation and this week’s Organ Donor Awareness Week.

This selfless decision to donate by a family who have lost a loved one has given me and other people with organ failure and our families a chance for a better quality of life and be able to plan for the future.

Now that he has regained full health, David is looking forward to representing Ireland at the 2020 European Transplant & Dialysis Sports Championships as a member of Transplant Team Ireland.

The games are being held in Dublin in August 2020 and will see 500 participants travelling from all over Europe.

If you would like to sign up to be an organ donor you can visit the website www.ika.ie, free text the word DONOR to 50050 or download a free 'digital organ donor card' app to you phone.

More in this section