TRANSPLANT Team Ireland reeled in more medals on the final events day at the 9th European Transplant & Dialysis Sports Championships in Vantaa, Finland as Garda Alan Gleeson, from Listowel, Kerry along with Urologist Ron Grainger from Dublin each secured Gold in their 200m sprint events.
Later, Ron went on to win his second Gold in the Long Jump event and then a Bronze in the the Ball Throw event but Alan had to pull out of the relay race event to attend his dialysis treatment.
Coming home to Dublin airport tomorrow with multiple medals also are teammates Dubliner Lenny Ryan and Corkman Mike Keohane and Kieran Murray from Ramelton.
Despite battling a chest infection all week, Kieran won a bronze medal in the 800m race event with a time of 2.31, slightly faster than his speed of 2.33 for the same distance at last year’s World Transplant Games in Argentina.
He persevered in the 1500m distance race later and crossed the line in fourth placed.
On Wednesday, Kieran secured a Gold medal for his net score in the Golf event.
Speaking after his races Kieran said he had a very good experience in Vantaa.
“Even though I had a chest infection it was still great to be able to compete. I really enjoyed my week here and it’s all all thanks to my donor. I met old friends and made new friends. It is an experience I will take with me for the rest of my life. I would like to thank everyone back home who supported me and I am looking forward to seeing my wife and three children at Dublin airport tomorrow.”
The 28 strong Transplant Team Ireland has put in a tremendous performance at the week long 9th European Transplant and Dialysis Sports Championships amassing a total of 21 Gold, 19 Silver and 29 Bronze medals.
Alan Gleeson was replaced in the relay team by James Nolan in the final who along with Ron Grainger, Matthew McNieve and Kieran Murray crossed the finish line in fourth place just missing out on third place.
Twenty four hours earlier Gleeson won a Gold medal in the 100m sprint and a Silver in the Long jump event before events were postponed due to heavy rainfall.
Every athlete at the European Transplant & Dialysis Sports Championships will either have already received a kidney, liver, heart, lung, pancreas or bone marrow transplant or are undergoing dialysis treatment.
The full Irish panel is as follows:-
Antrim: John McAleer, Newtownabbey (kidney) (oldest member of the team)
Cork: Mike Keohane, Roscarbery, Clonakilty (liver); Charlie Ryan, Cobh (liver);
Clare: Marie O’Connor, Lahinch (kidney)
Donegal: Kieran Murray, Ramelton (kidney)
Galway: Linda Waters, Athenry (dialysis); Zimele Brown, Galway (dialysis, a native of New Orleans)
Kerry: Stephen Byrne, Tralee (kidney); Alan Gleeson, Listowel (dialysis)
Kildare: James Nolan, Kilcullen (kidney)
Kilkenny: Richard McEvoy, living in Limerick city, a native of Jenkinstown, Kilkenny (dialysis),
Mayo: Matthew McNieve, Knock (kidney) (Youngest member of team)
Offaly: Edward McAuliffe, Portarlington (kidney)
Sligo: Bridie Nicholson, Sligo town (kidney and pancreas)
Tipperary: Orla Hogan, Nenagh (kidney); and Edward Crowe, Carrick on Suir (kidney)
Westmeath: Finian Farrell, Mullingar (kidney) and Noel Marsden, Athlone (dialysis).
Wicklow: Philip Kavanagh, Arklow (liver)
Dublin: Ron Grainger, Castleknock, D.15 (kidney); Harry Ward, Team Captain, Baldoyle, D.13 (kidney); Paul Prendergast, Santry, D.9 (kidney); Chikoyo White, Balbriggan (dialysis); Peter Heffernan, Skerries (kidney); Michael Dwyer, Cabinteely; Leonard Ryan, Tallaght, D 24 (kidney); and Deirdre Faul, Dalkey (liver).
Team Manager, Colin White from Balbriggan, Dublin
Team Doctor, Claire Kennedy from Lucan, Dublin
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The Ramelton man, who is a kidney transplant recipient, won a Bronze in Golf event age category 30-39 years.