We’re overwhelmed to have “SOLD OUT” our Camino and delighted that this year our Ambassador, five time All Ireland winner and the country’s first winner of Dancing With the Stars, Aidan O’Mahony is walking with us.
We will remember all of our families and friends along the way and especially when we reach Santiago de Compostela next weekend. We’ll update as we travel.
To support or sponsor any of the team head to: https://cry.ie/index.php/donate/
I’l join the team again and my story is below.
For me personally I will make this journey always remembering my much loved, always missed and gorgeous niece Jen (Jenny Jewel).
Lucia Ebbs of CRY – My Story
I worked with Michael Greene, Trustee & Co Founder of CRY since the late 80s. I was his PA in HomeBond. I was working with Michael when his son Peter died suddenly in 1996 and saw the heartbreak and devastation it caused. When Michael and Marie started up CRY I did the paperwork & admin to help.
It became personal to me on 22nd of May 2002 when my niece Jenny O’Riordan died suddenly. Jenny (Jenny Jewel to the family) was my sister Kate and her husband Jerry’s only daughter.
Jenny had spent one summer in HomeBond with us– she called it her ‘summer job’ in her gap year. Michael got to know Jenny well and he supported her after she returned to college and completed her Masters. She went on to work with KPMG (now known as BearingPoint) and spent two years there as a Consultant and loved every minute of it making great friends. She particularly loved the location and couldn’t have been any happier there – unless they could have moved closer to Grafton Street for the endless shopping. We always believed BT must have had a drop in cosmetic sales that summer!
Jenny died suddenly on 22nd May 2002 from Cardiomyopathy on her father’s 50th birthday. I will never forget the call – I was just in the door from a holiday and Kate called to say Jenny had been taken to Blanchardstown Hospital. I collected Kate and we drove to the hospital but I think I knew at the time that she would be dead when we arrived, she was. Jenny had died while sitting with her best friend Sinead O’Brien– looking at booking flights for a holiday.
Jenny’s sudden death devastated all of our lives but especially Kate, Jerry and her brother JJ – she was 26, beautiful, bright, kind and had so much to live for. Her friends and colleagues were heartbroken too. Time helps you to live with it but you never forget. Nothing is ever the same and no family event or occasion happens without you knowing someone is missing. Kate now works as a Volunteer with the Charity and will support families affected as she has been.
After Jen’s death Deirdre Hanley of BearingPoint visited Kate at home to sympathise and told her they wanted to do something positive to remember Jen – after that visit we discussed it and Michael met with Deirdre Hanley and CRY’s website was born (cry.ie). BearingPoint still generously host our website and the family take great comfort from that.
Michael stood down as Chairman in 2018 and Tommy Fegan took on the role of Chairman. Tommy and his family came to us having lost their son and brother, Kevin in 2010 and Tommy is now working with us in our most challenging year ever where we’ve built a new and expanded CRY Centre. We’re moving there in the coming weeks but to allow us achieve this ambitious task we’re going to need unprecedented support in 2019 so fundraisers like the Camino are vital.
My office is in the CRYP Screening Centre in Tallaght and daily I am in contact with families who approach us for help, emotional support or to offer to fundraise. I understand a little where they are coming from – every story is different and every time I take a call from a bereaved family I understand a little of where they are coming from.
My own three boys are patients in the CRYP Screening Centre so I understand the concerns of a parent who needs to come to the Centre for screening and the peace of mind that comes with that visit.
Dealing with a bereaved family does not get any easier with time but I hope we are helping families to get some peace of mind and to come to terms with their loss.