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The Fergal Fund

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After a catastrophic motorbike accident on 3 April 2022, Fergal Lydon was left paralyzed from the chest down. His last memory for 47 days was sending a video to his family from hospital telling them he loved them and that he would be home soon. After numerous surgeries and 14 weeks in ICU, Fergal left Galway to travel to the National Rehabilitation Hospital in Dublin to start the hard work of his recovery.
Fergal is no stranger to hard work, having worked in construction for the last 30 years to support his beloved wife Aoife and family Dylan (20), Roisin (15), Siobhan(12) and Ryan (10) (at the time of the accident). 

Enjoying his daughters confirmation a week before the accident.



Weeks before his accident, Fergal had set up a construction business in Galway with his son Dylan after several years working abroad. He is determined to get back to work with his family and with your help he will make this vision a reality.



Sunday morning after mass, Fergal took his motorbike for a spin to visit his friends. With plans of preparing a big Sunday roast dinner for Aoife and the kids, it was a short visit and then he was back on his bike for the ride home. Within half a kilometre of that journey, tragedy struck as a bad section of the road caused Fergal’s bike to lose grip and violently throw him from the bike. Within an instant Fergal went from driving to lying on his back in a ditch on the far side of the road. Instinctively he knew something was seriously wrong as he couldn’t feel his legs. His friends had heard the revs of the bike and then seen Fergal flying through the air and ran to the scene of the accident within minutes. They immediately raised the alarm phoning the emergency services. Fergal arrived by air ambulance to University Hospital Galway to be assessed by their expert medical team.

For Fergal’s family the next few hours were annihilating, as they waited for information about his injuries. Aoife, who had also arrived in the air ambulance, had already shared Fergal’s suspicion that his injury was significant, but was hoping against hope that the loss of feeling in his lower body was temporary. Much later that night she was finally informed that Fergal’s spinal cord had been severely damaged. As he was currently in a stable condition the surgery team decided to wait until morning to bring him into theatre.
Finally his sister was allowed in to see him. Fergal, brave as ever joked with her that he would be out of here in no time. He thoughtfully recorded a short video for his children and his Mom letting them know not to worry and that he would see them after the operation. Little did he know that it would be months later before Fergal was able to speak again.


The procedure that was scheduled to take 2-4 hours ended up taking over 8 hours and almost an equal amount of pints of blood. Surgery exposed the displacement of two of Fergal’s vertebrae slicing his spinal cord, leaving only a sliver connected. Medical prognosis – Fergal would never walk again. Due to the longevity of this first procedure the medical team decided to wait a day or so to get Fergal’s body a chance to recover before bringing him back into surgery to attend to his shattered collar bones.That night Aoife and the rest of the family strained to absorb the implications of this news, but were optimistic and immensely grateful that Fergal was still with them and the surgeons were happy with the outcome.
Unfortunately, Fergal never went back into theatre to get his collar bones repaired. His body went into spinal shock, which meant Fergal literally fought for his life practically every night for months ( it always seemed to be at night when trauma struck). After 5 weeks Fergal was finally able to have his medication reduced and therefore regained consciousness, but had no awareness or memories of the next few weeks until nearer his birthday on the 20th May (7 weeks after the operation).


The next 5 weeks were a blur that was hard to comprehend. Fergal suffered one infection after another, which meant the medical team was constantly trialing different antibiotics to clear up the infections and to stop Fergal from severe oxygen desaturation and respiratory failure on virtually a daily basis.


Ann one of many of the wonderful staff in ICU.


His first day out of the hospital for fresh air in 5 weeks.

Finally, after 14 weeks in ICU Fergal was deemed healthy enough to be transferred to the National Rehabilitation Hospital in Dublin to start his rehabilitation. The ICU staff gathered in the corridor to wish him well as he got ready for the next step in his journey.



Enjoying his farewell before Dun Laoghaire.
His ambulance taxi to the NRH for his rehabilitation.

Progress.

1 year later, Fergal is determined to walk again and we are appealing for your support to allow for him to work with Ken Ware in Australia. That is only half of Fergals ambition, we are looking for a therapist to work with Fergal on his ambition to ultimately bring this practice to Ireland in time and “To help people suffering with spinal cord injuries, chronic pain and any other improvements on physical and emotional well-being”.

Ken Ware, Founder of Neurophysics Therapy has developed a NeuroPhysics Functional Movement Training and Rehabilitation Programme (NP). A scientifically based and clinically proven method for 25 years which has helped many thousands of people recover their quality of life, from a variety of problems, seeing their bodies return to their optimal function.


The treatment consists of a fully integrated, exercise-based, holistic program that engages all of the body’s systems in a unique way to optimise recovery from a variety of conditions by activating communication in the nervous system which connects pathways in a manner that has not been previously discovered and explained. As Ken says ‘’Neurophysics treatment is all about treating the person not the disorder.’’

Getting strong in WayFiit gym. 

Our aim this year is to raise €58k to get Fergal started on his first round of treatment in Australia. He has secured placement there for September 2023 to begin an 8 week program and will need subsequent funding of €116k for 2024 and €116k for 2025 to complete the treatment in full.

2023
  • Ken Ware NeuroPhysics Therapy 8 weeks €38k
  • Flights for Fergal €7k
  • Flights for an assistant to help him over and home again €4500
  • Travel Insurance €500
  • Accommodation for 8 weeks in a wheelchair accessible appartment €8k

Fergal will have to be accompanied by someone during his treatment. His family will be covering all daily expenses.
(These are estimates at the moment and they could go up or down depending on the market. We will know much more closer to the time the total cost)

To achieve this goal, our target is €290,000. Please support and stay connected with us to follow Fergal’s journey and for clarity and transparency on how the funds are going towards the travel costs, treatments and the necessary training to bring this breakthrough practice to Ireland in time. 



Follow us on Instagram @thefergalfund or @Fergallydon
Thanking you from the bottom of our hearts.
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Aoife Lydon
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