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Mary Crawford, principal and John Smith, board of management chairman, with Adam Clohessy with his award. Photograph by John Kelly.

Spanish Point student’s heroic act

ST Joseph’s Secondary School, Spanish Point, recently presented its end-of-year awards, one of which was the prestigious Ceist award. Ceist is the trustee umbrella body that governs St Joseph’s.

This year, the award was presented to Adam Clohessy, a second-year pupil, for his quick action in helping to save his father’s life.

Living in Kilrush, Adam has been attending Spanish Point ASD class for the last two years. The school felt it was appropriate that he be recognised for his actions in saving his father’s life.

Adam explained, “I woke up at 5am and my dad was calling my name. I thought he was talking in his sleep but he called again. It was only then I heard a thump. I went to check him and I found him on the floor. He had fallen out of bed and I tried to help him back in but he just kept falling. His speech was a bit slurred, which eventually made me realise that something was wrong.”

At this point, Adam’s father told him to go back to bed.

“As I returned to my room I couldn’t stop thinking that something was wrong. As I told him I was going to get help, Dad didn’t want me to leave but I knew I had to get some. I got on my clothes and walked to my sister, Leonie’s house, which is 20 minutes away. It was her that called the emergency services. I waited outside my house to show the ambulance where to go. I heard one of the ambulance staff say he [my Dad] had to be airlifted, as time was very important.

“My sister went in the ambulance with Dad and I stayed at home with my other sister, Sinead. When Leonie came home, she told us that Dad might not make it through the night and that he was critical following a severe stroke.

“My mum told me that the doctors said I saved my dad’s life and that only for my actions, he probably would not be alive today.”

School principal Mary Crawford said, “Thinking about the magnitude of these events for Adam, he still remains a gentle, loving, kind-hearted and well-mannered young man. The event has helped Adam to grow in confidence and helped him develop his appreciation for people, school and life in general. From talking to some of his teachers, it is very clear that Adam is an extremely intelligent and well-loved member of the school.

“Throughout the last two years, Adam has developed academically, socially, conversationally and physically. He likes going to school and with the way he has grown recently, he can be described as a modern-day hero

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