July 9, 2018

Moylagh 50 mile challenge raises €110,497 for cancer services

€575,000 raised over seven years

Participants who took on the 7th Moylagh JFK 50 Mile challenge have raised €110,497 for cancer services. The total amount raised from the endurance challenge was unveiled in Teddy’s Pub in Moylagh on Saturday night, with €88,397 going to support the Irish Cancer Society’s cancer research and services for cancer patients, and €22,099 donated to LARCC Cancer support. This brings the total raised over the past seven years to €575,000.

On the night the Sarah Sadie Fitzsimons Memorial Trophy was presented to Martin Sheridan from Cavan who raised €12,000. The trophy is awarded to the person who raises the most funds and was presented by Sarah’s husband Eamonn and son, Eamonn Jnr. Martin has won the cup two years in a row now and this year he took on an extra challenge by walking from Malin Head in Donegal, to Sneem in Co Kerry – racking up a total of 316 miles. His wife Nicole supported him along the grueling hot route.

A total of 800 people, with individuals travelling from counties around Ireland, took part in the Moylagh JFK 50 Mile Challenge this year. A total of 273 people completed the full distance. The event attracted people from every county in Ireland and everyone had positive feedback. The group’s Facebook page was flooded with thanks and appreciation from those who took part and those who benefited from the support services of the two charities.

Now the largest 50-mile challenge in Europe, the event has grown thanks to the encouragement and generosity of people from Meath, Cavan and Westmeath who are committed to supporting people affected by cancer.

Brenda McCarthy, Community Fundraiser, Irish Cancer Society said, “I am truly taken aback by the money raised through the event each year to help support people affected by cancer. The cancer experience can be a very difficult one, but this money will help ensure no one has to face that journey alone. Thank you to the committee who dedicated many hours of their time to organise the event, to the participants for testing their endurance on the challenge and all those who donated to support them. Your support will make an immense difference to those affected by cancer.”

Gerry McDonnell of the Moylagh 50 Mile Committee said, “It’s just truly amazing how this event grows year on year. This year has been our biggest success with nothing but positive feedback. We work hard throughout the year to try to improve the challenge and our committee is made up of remarkable people who work tirelessly. We all have a common goal of making this event more than just a walk, but a true inspiration for anyone going through cancer. Next year we are looking for corporate sponsors who would come on board and help us to the next step.”

On the night Jonnie Guirke, Committee Chairman, thanked everyone who helped in any shape or form, especially the Civil Defence, the local GAA clubs, stewards, food prep and services, all the drivers, the people along the way who opened their homes to the participants, the photographers, people who helped with the clock, the sound systems, and all the sponsors. The walk is run on a budget of €4,000 and it is thanks to all these people that costs are low. Thanks also went to Dympna Hand who cut the ribbon on the morning of the walk and has dedicated her time over the past seven years to the event.

The committee of the Moylagh JFK 50 Mile Challenge is made up of Claire and Thomás McGivney, Sean and Tilly Grall, Paul and Theresa Foley, Gerry and Anna Marie Grall, Pearse Grall, Mary Nolan, Joan and Lisa O’Growney, Kathryn Cooke, Breda Caralon, Noel Connell, Mary Garry, Mary Guirke, Jonnie Guirke, John McDonnell, Eamonn Fitzsimons, Marie Masterson, Gerry McDonnell, Ian Monaghan, Seamus Maxwell, Norbert Hanley, Oliver Malia, Sean Brady, Seamus Mulvanny, Jimmy Skully, Frank McEvoy and John Reilly.