DUNE half marathon can help realise Ryan's dreams to run
Tuesday, 15 January 2013
NEWRY and Dundalk runners are helping to make double-amputee Ryan Cinnamond's dream of running come true by donating the proceeds of the DUNE Cross Border Half Marathon.
The unique run is being organised by athletes Barry Duffy and Dermot Winters in association with Newry and Mourne District Council and Louth Local Authorities.
The Event will take place on Bank Holiday Monday, March 18, starting at the town centre in Dundalk and finishing at the Quays shopping and leisure complex in Newry.
Ryan, a Seventh Year student at St Paul's High School Bessbrook, was at the launch of the cross border run on Thursday, where he was happy to talk about his ambition to run, something most 17-year-olds take for granted.
“I can walk and do everything else so hopefully I can run as that's what I would love to do," said Cinnamond.
“It is something I am looking forward to and I really want to do. I just feel that it is something that I lost. I lost walking but I've got that back.
“My parents are happy with my progress but I won't be happy until I further myself. I want to be able to run and then driving will be next."
For Ryan to able to run he will likely need blades, as worn by South Africa's Oscar Pistorius in the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics, and there are no qualified coaches in Ireland capable of training a double amputee how to run in blades, thus a specialist coach from the UK will be required.
And Cinnamond said he is grateful for the fundraising and is willing to help out other causes in the future.
“It is a great event and I really appreciate what the guys are doing for me, by raising money to help get running blades.
“People may think that I am an inspiration but I really appreciate the work people have put in to help me, to raise money for the Trust.
“And it is good that when anything happens in the community people rally around and helps out.
“When I get the blades and get up running I'll be happy to help any charity raise awareness for their cause."
One of the chief organisers, along with Barry Duffy, Dermot Winters, who also played a key role in the successful Keep On Running World Record Relay last year, sees the run as a coming together of runners from north and south of Ireland.
“It will gather momentum and bring runners from Dundalk and Newry together and all proceeds will go to the Ryan Cinnamond Trust and it is just an idea that myself and Barry (Duffy) came up with," said Winters.
“Both Councils are fully behind it, we approached the Guards and PSNI and they will be happy to be a part of it as well."
And Winters urged families to make the run part of their St Patrick's Day celebrations.
“People will be using this event a catapult for their first half marathon and they have only started training now. It is a family event. Newry are having their St Patrick's Day celebrations on the Saturday, so perhaps people can enjoy their drink on Saturday, recover on Sunday and then join us for the half marathon on Monday," he said.
At the launch along with Ryan and event organisers were dignitaries from Newry and Mourne District Council and the Louth Authority as well as representatives from the PSNI and Gardia.
John McArdle, Mayor of Newry and Mourne District Council said:"Sport acts as a catalyst in bringing people and I congratulate the organisers in having the foresight to organise an event which will give people from both Newry and Mourne and Dundalk the opportunity to come together and participate in a unique Cross Border event."
Councillor Jim Lennon chairman of Louth County Council speaking at the launch welcomed the event and said he looked forward to seeing significant numbers of participants signing up for what is a unique and very worthwhile event.
He went on to say that this event represents what is at the heart of the memorandum of understanding between Louth County Council and Newry and Mourne District Council in that it brings together the people of Louth and Newry on Mourne together on all levels including Sport.
A large turnout is expected with over 1500 runners expected from Dundalk alone.
For those interested, the DUNE name is derived from DUndalk and NEwry, but rest assured it won't take place over sand.
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