Tipp top plans for Eoin's big lockdown birthday

Eoin O’Neill who will celebrate his 21st birthday on February 1. 
Tipp top plans for Eoin's big lockdown birthday

Siobhan Slattery, Lisronagh, Co Tipperary who has asked people to send birthday cards to her son Eoin who celebrates his 21st birthday next Monday. Her grandniece Harper Rose is holding a picture of Eoin who is autistic, non-verbal, and living in residential care. Picture Dan Linehan

Dig out the leftover Christmas stamps and head to the mailbox - a man celebrating his 21st needs some birthday cards.

Siobhan Slattery from Lisronagh near Clonmel in Co Tipperary did have big plans for her son Eoin's birthday this coming Tuesday, centring around visiting him at the residential centre where he lives in Monasterevin, Co Kildare, with presents and treats. Eoin, who is autistic and non-verbal, has lived in the centre since he was 16.

But, as with most things, the pandemic has out paid to that idea - so Siobhan is instead asking the nation to scribble up some birthday cards and mail them to him instead.

"I was going to go up with my mum and go in with all these presents and cards from everyone and spend the day with him and have a bit of a party but I can't go up," Siobhan explained. "I have never missed a birthday, he loves his cake, we have always done everything together."

She has nothing but praise for Galro, which operates the centre where Eoin lives, but the pandemic has meant her weekly visits have been severely curtailed - she managed to see Eoin just before Christmas, and prior to that, back in September.

Hence the card idea. He likes looking at the cards," Siobhan said. 

He can read, he can't speak, but he will read them. He will be so amused.

 Eoin O’Neill who will celebrate his 21st birthday on February 1.  Picture Dan Linehan

Eoin O’Neill who will celebrate his 21st birthday on February 1.  Picture Dan Linehan

Eoin is currently getting into baking, and loves football, basketball, boxing, Celtic and Tipperary hurling. That last one is handy, especially since Tipperary manager Liam Sheedy has already recorded a video message for him, telling Eoin he hoped everyone was "spoiling him".

Premier County hurlers Seamus Callanan and Paudie Maher also got in on the act with their own video messages to mark Eoin's Big Two One, and Siobhan said she hoped others might chip in with a few cards to mark the occasion.

The address for any scribblers is Eoin O'Neill, Island House, Skirteen, Monasterevin, Co Kildare.

And just this one time: hon Tipp.

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Wednesday, March 3, 2021

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