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Aine Courtney Murphy of Ruan with her five year old daughter Niamh. Aine is taking part in the forthcoming Shave Or Dye fundraiser which is on at Canny,s bar, Killanena on November 27th. Photograph by John Kelly

Áine leads political party in head shave for Milford

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A RUAN mum is parting with her shoulder-length locks in a bid to give something back to the people she describes as “angels”, because of the support they gave her late father.
Áine Courtney Murphy will shave her head on November 27 at Kenny’s in Killanena, in a bid to raise €5,000 for Milford Hospice so that other families can benefit from the support that hers did.
Áine’s beloved dad, Patrick (Paddy) Courtney lost his battle with liver cancer at the age of 69. Thanks to the Milford team, he was able to spend his last weeks comfortably and free of pain at his home.
“I really couldn’t thank the Milford team enough,” she told The Champion. “They were there to advise us when dad was ill. They treated him with so much care and respect and they were never intrusive. They were angels sent by God.”
Paddy, a well loved and respected member of the community passed away two years ago next month.
“Dad was a happy-go-lucky person who loved nature and loved cards,” Áine said. “Those were his passions. There was one girl from Milford and both of them discovered that they loved otters. You should have seen the smile on dad’s face. It really meant so much.”
Áine has several supporters in her fundraising campaign, including her husband.
“He lost his own father to cancer and he really believes in helping and in fundraising,” Áine said.
The idea of the ‘Shave or Dye’ challenge was inspired by Paddy’s pride in his own hair.
“He was so fond of his own hair,” Áine said.”He always carried a comb and he would say that there were just two weeks between a good haircut and a bad one.
“I’ve never done anything like this before, but I’ve had great support and would love to raise as much as I can for Milford so that another family can get the amazing care that we got.”
Áine will also be joined in the hairdresser’s/barber’s chair by three politicians, Councillor Pat Hayes, Cathaoirleach of the Killaloe Municipal District Joe Cooney and Senator Timmy Dooley.
“I’m so grateful for their support,” she said. “They’ve given me a real boost in doing this. I could only achieve so much if I was on my own and Jim Woodcock and Seán Loughrey are getting their heads shaved too. I really want to thank them, because they really are gentle folk.”
Before deciding to shed her brunette locks, Áine asked for the permission of her three daughters Shauna (8), Niamh (5) and Ciara (4).
“They were a little upset about it at first,” she said. “Then they agreed on condition that I agree to wear make-up, which is something that I don’t really do ordinarily!”
Councillor Hayes, who will also have his head shaved, said he was delighted to support Áine’s fundraiser. “When I was asked to get involved, I was really glad to do so,” he said.
“I have had cancer myself and my late mother passed away with cancer. Everyone has been affected in some way and it’s predicted that one-in-two people will experience it in future years.
“I don’t mind losing my hair for a service that is as important as the one provided by Milford. I’m urging everyone to get behind the event.”
Details on how to support Áine are available on her Facebook page (Áine Murphy) Sponsorship cards are available from Councillors Cooney and Hayes and Senator Dooley.
Sponsorship lines are also available at Morty Kelly’s in Ruan and at the local XL shop.

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