(Francies neck & spinal injury on x-ray)
As Francis’s injuries where so severe and specific he was airlifted to Dublin’s Mater Hospital Intensive Care Unit on the same day.
Francis then underwent seven hours of emergency spinal and neck surgery. He had titanium clamps and screws that put his bones back together, and he also had many pieces of bone fragments removed from his body. The impact of the surgery on his body was immense, but without the surgery he would not be alive today.
Francis woke up in the Mater Hospital Intensive Care Unit, unable to breath for himself, he could not move at all and was hardly able to talk or swallow.
Francis was then transferred on May 31st to the National Rehabilitation Hospital in Dun Laoghaire. Here, he has been undergoing physio therapy and occupational therapy with the aim of becoming as independent as possible.
He spent over a month in the ICU, where it was a difficult and challenging time for both Francis and his family. Apart from the emotional and life changing situation that they now find themselves in, there are also the medical issues that Francis has had to face, as a result of his lungs filling with fluid that he cannot clear for himself. He had a tracheostomy which left him unable to speak or eat. Once his health improved, he was moved to the Spinal Injury Unit. He has continued to get stronger and with his optimistic attitude, Francis is an inspiration who continues to amaze us with his strength.
The road ahead is not only going to be physically and emotionally challenging, but the costs involved in making sure Francis has all that is needed for a person living with quadriplegia will be extensive and unfortunately the medical system in Ireland cannot cover all the basics and essentials of what is required for his needs.
In response to this, we have set up the ‘Francis Kelly Fund’, to help alleviate the financial burden that Francis now finds himself in, and to ensure he is given the opportunities in his life, both medically and personally that he will depend on.
We encourage anyone who wants to donate, to do so via his GoFundMe page.
Other options for anyone who would like to help are direct fundraising events; from music nights, sponsored walks/runs, bake-sales, bucket collections, auctions, coffee mornings, fun-runs, head shaves, swims etc…
If you would like to organise a fundraiser for Francis please contact us at:
[email redacted] or via the facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/FrancisKellyFund2018/
We can supply collection buckets, sponsorship cards, event tickets and t-shirts (and any other support you may need).
Before the accident:
Francis was born a healthy baby on April 30th 1999 in Feakle, Co. Clare.
As a young boy he was always adventurous, energetic, and independent.
Francis loves sports and physical activity, he has always excelled in this area.
He started hurling at age four, for the Scariff team in Co. Clare, and was selected for the Clare developmental squad when he was twelve.
Francis was also on the Lough Derg Soccer team.
In his early teens at Villiers School in Limerick, he was captain of the junior hockey team, and was part of the school rugby team.
In his later teen years Francis trained in MMA in Ennis, Co. Clare.
Francis also has a keen interest in music and was a drummer in a band.
(Francis - back/top far left - with his junior hurling team as a boy)
After the accident:
The physical impact of the injury:
Francis is paralysed from the chest down, and the upper bicep down. This is considered a ‘complete injury’.
Francis only has the support of his diaphragm for breathing and his cough and swallow reflex has been effected.
He experiences muscle spasticity and phantom pains in the parts of his body that are paralysed. He also has pain in his neck and shoulders, the area of his body that he has feeling in.
Francis has movement in his bicep/shoulder/upper forearm.
Francis will be confined to a wheelchair for the rest of his life, and in medical terms is referred to as a quadriplegic.
Francis will need 24hr assistance.
Francis today in physio, working on his seating balance.
Will will be updating this section soon with the aim of reaching funding goals for particular items that Francis requires. This way you can see when targets are reached and understand the impact your donations are making on Francies life.
Thank you for your support.
- Daniela Degli Alberi
- Niall Dear
- Ali Roberts
- Ailís Melville
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