00:00 Saturday 19 September 2009  Written by Carol Gilbert

Charity auction cheque presentations in Mary Anns Bar and Restaurant

MIXED emotions were to the fore last Friday night when the proceeds of an auction held last month were presented in Mary Ann's Bar and Restaurant.

Over €39,297 was shared out between four charities, fifty percent of the proceeds, €19,648.67, going to the Stuart Mangan Fund, with CoAction, Skibbereen, Castlehaven National School and St. Joseph's National School, Skibbereen, receiving €6,549.55 each.

Stuart Mangan (26) from Fermoy was totally paralysed from the neck down following a devastating spinal injury whilst playing rugby for his club, Hammersmith and Fulham RFC in London. Sadly, Stuart died suddenly on August 7. The trustees of his charity are committed to honouring his memory by ensuring all monies in the Stuart Mangan fund will be distributed among other injured people.

Cian O'Mahony was the beloved eldest son of Patricia and Fergus O'Mahony, and brother to Max. Cian suffered from cerebral palsy since birth and died suddenly on October 16, 2008.

Dee Forbes, speaking on behalf of the Mangan family, said the family hoped to visit Castletownshend before Christmas to say 'a huge thank you' to everyone involved in the fund-raiser. She explained that Stuart, a remarkable young man, had been working on nine separate projects to help people with disabilities on the night before he died suddenly and added: "Stuart so wanted his life to be remembered by helping other people."

Fergus O'Mahony thanked everyone who had contributed in any way to the success of the fundraising auction. He spoke of the huge support CoAction Skibbereen had been to his son Cian and how much Cian had enjoyed his time attending St. Joseph's National School.

When accepting the cheque on behalf of CoAction, Skibbereen, Mary O'Mahony Moynihan commented she knew the importance of the work CoAction undertook from first-hand experience, having a brother who used the service. Mr. Bernard O'Callaghan expressed his appreciation on behalf of Castlehaven National School, the school Cian O'Mahony would have attended in different circumstances. Mr. O'Callaghan said the donation had come at an important time for the school.

Darragh Glynn, principal of St. Joseph's National School, recalled Cian's time at St. Joseph's and said: "It was a joy to have Cian amongst us and we want to thank you for the time that we had with him."

A raffle held last Friday night raised €2,000 for the West Cork Peto Fund, which will enable the charity to bring a therapist over from Hungary to work in West Cork for four weeks with people with physical and multiple disabilities originating from damage to the central nervous system.

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