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Mark and Laura Hinsley of Dun an Oir, Shannon with their newborn baby Shane, who they are naming after Clare hurling hero Shane O’Donnell. Photograph by John Kelly

Baby Shane in dramatic debut

SHANE O’Donnell wrote himself into the history books on Saturday and a child born early on Monday morning, in the most dramatic of circumstances, will bear his first name.

Mark and Laura Hinsley of Dun an Oir, Shannon with their newborn baby Shane, who they are naming after Clare hurling hero Shane O’Donnell.  Photograph by John Kelly
Mark and Laura Hinsley of Dun an Oir, Shannon with their newborn baby Shane, who they are naming after Clare hurling hero Shane O’Donnell. Photograph by John Kelly

Shannon’s Laura Hinsley gave birth to her fourth child and first son at the side of the road close to the Clare-Limerick border, after a dash to the hospital didn’t quite succeed.

Describing the morning, she said, “My husband was doing 160km going in the road but I knew once we hit Bunratty that it was coming. He had to pull over across from the Two Mile Inn. We went from flying down the road to pulling in and the baby was just there! He delivered the baby, made sure it was crying and put his hoody around it and drove on again to the hospital; it had happened in a matter of seconds. I’d say we were only stopped for about a minute and a half, it was that fast. He had said to me it was a boy, but we were passing Ivan’s when it sunk in, after he said it again.”

The baby was due to arrive on Monday but Laura didn’t realise things would happen quite so fast. “I was getting pains at 12 o’clock on Sunday night after we came back from Newmarket [after welcoming the Clare team back]. Then the next morning, I told my husband we’d be going in at some stage. At nine o’clock we went out and took all the flags down from outside the house. We headed in at about twenty past nine in the morning. He was born at about twenty to ten at the side of the road.

“I thought there was loads of time, I thought I’d be in the hospital for a few hours before he’d come. It was really fast.”
Asked if the name was inspired by the teenager who scored 3-3 on Saturday, she said “kind of, yeah”.

The new baby’s three sisters are aged 15, 11 and one year and Laura said they are thrilled to have a little brother. “They are delighted, they are so happy it is a boy, they wanted a boy all the way through.”
Mark said it was “probably the most stressful morning I’ve ever had”.

He got a huge shock when he was informed they wouldn’t reach the hospital in time.

“She told me when we were passing Bunratty. We were doing 160km on the motorway and she told me I was going to have to pull in, we weren’t going to make it. At that point, I put my hand on my chest and I could feel my heart beating out through it.”

Having been to the births of his other children, he felt he’d be okay as long as there were no unforeseen problems.

“I was confident enough delivering the baby, all I was worrying about was if the baby wasn’t breathing or if there were any complications, that I wouldn’t know what to do.”
He said he was glad they weren’t a mile or two further on. “Afterwards, it was great to look back on. That he was born on the Clare side of the border made it better again.”

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