The family of a Laois man who sadly lost his life to Covid-19 have launched a fundraiser in his memory.
John ‘Ulick’ Conroy, from Beladd in Portlaoise, passed away on January 31 in St James’s Hospital in Dublin.
A loving husband to Betty, father to Conor, Audrey and Rory, father in law to Fergal and Zoe, grandfather TJ, Nadine, Dara and Odin – and friend to so many lost his life as a result of Covid-19.
He is also fondly remembered by those in Kolbe Special School where he worked as a caretaker and bus escort.
Mr Conroy spent 23 days in hospital fighting the virus. He spent his time in the ICU in Portlaoise and was then transferred to St. James’s ICU.
According to his family, he received great care in both hospitals and that is why they have decided to run a fundraiser in his memory with all proceeds going to the ICU Department at St James’s Hospital, ICU Department at Portloaise Hospital and Kolbe Special School.
Daughter Audrey explained: “Daddy spent 23 days in hospital fighting the virus.
“He spent his time in ICU in Portlaoise, and was then transferred to St James’s ICU. He received great care in both hospitals.
“Daddy’s loss has been devastating to us all. We felt as a family that we wanted to do something positive and to give something back, and to do it in daddy’s name.
“Daddy was 73 when he passed away, and would have been 74 on May 28 this year.
“We have decided to organise this fundraiser to raise funds for both ICUs who gave such love and care to daddy and us his family in the most difficult of times, and for Kolbe Special School, where daddy worked many happy years as caretaker and bus escort.”
Audrey explained how the fundraiser will begin today and that members of the family will run/walk 5km a day for the next 73 days.
And when they reach May 28, she will run 23km to finish the fundraiser and represent the number of days that Mr Conroy spent fighting the virus in hospital.
Incredibly, in less than a day, more than €5,000 has been donated.
Audrey said: “The fundraiser will start on 15th March and conclude on daddy’s 74th birthday. We will run/walk 5km a day for 73 days – the 5km representing the month of daddy’s birthday, and 73 representing the age he was when he passed away)
“On the 74th day, daddy’s 74th birthday, I will run 23km which will represent the 23 days that daddy spent in the hospitals fighting the virus.
“We would love for as many of you to put the runners on and walk or run 5km in daddy’s memory and donate to these wonderful causes.”
Anyone who would like to donate, can do so by clicking here.