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Declan sheds the pounds to pound the streets of New York


AN East Clare man has lost almost six stone in weight after signing up to run the New York Marathon on November 6 in memory of his late father.

Last January, Declan Moroney, Tulla, started running for the first time, running two kilometres then five kilometres and increased it gradually before completing the Dingle Half-Marathon last September.

The 48-year-old is raising funds for the Oesophageal Cancer Society and also for Inclusive Athletics in Tulla and has already collected more than €16,000 for these two charitable causes.

“I have lost almost six stone (82 pounds) in the last year and wanted to do something in my dad’s memory. I have never run before so this is a massive undertaking and challenge for me.

“I started walking first to lose a bit of weight and when I lost some weight, I started running. I decided if I was ever going to a run a marathon it would be this year. I signed up for the New York Marathon because it was the most attractive one to raise funds.

“I decided I will go for a big one, tell everyone I am doing it and then I can’t back out.”

His father, Liam Moroney, who suffered from Oesophageal cancer, died in November 2020, which was diagnosed in 2013.

He got great support from the Oesophageal Cancer Society and Declan wants to try and raise funds to give something back to this organisation.

Liam had his oesophagus removed in a six-hour operation, which left him without a stomach and meant he had great difficulty eating enough to keep him nourished.

“He dropped to six stone 10lbs weight at one stage. He had to eat small amounts very often and indeed ate every night around 3 am to try and keep himself sustained.

“We used to laugh because he was attending a dietician to gain weight and I was at the same time attending a dietician to lose weight,” Declan recalled.

The second initiative that Declan wants to help is Tulla Inclusive Athletics. Tulla Inclusive Athletics caters for kids in the local East Clare area that need assistance and his nephew Jack Reidy, who is non-verbal and has Autism goes there regularly and loves participating with others.

“Club members help kids of all abilities and disabilities and it is wonderful to see them out having fun.

“They are part of Tulla Athletics Club and hope to move their activities to the new athletics track that is being developed there. The funds raised will be used to get them equipment for their activities.”

To gain entry to the New York marathon he had to raise funds for local New York charities to the value of €2,500.

Declan paid this sum to guarantee entry so all funds raised in Clare will be split evenly between the two charitable causes.

One of his big fundraisers is a Tractor Run, which starts at the Mills’ Tavern this Sunday at 1pm, travelling through Tulla, Bodyke, Broadford and back to O’Callaghan’s Mills.

There will also be a raffle, food and music on the day. Walter Moroney, who can be contacted on 087 9112319, is one of the main organisers.

Tickets are also on sale in several outlets and business in Tulla for what has been described as “the world’s first marathon in a pub”.

In total, 42 people will each run a kilometre on a treadmill in the Powerhouse Bar, Tulla, on Saturday, October 29. It is timed and each runner will have a sponsorship card.

There will be a monster raffle on the night, with €4,500 worth of prizes.

Donations can be made on idonate.ie

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