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Bearded man highlights battle for suicide prevention

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AFTER losing his father to suicide in 2015, Gary O’Dowd is determined to turn his grief into something positive,.

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AFTER losing his father to suicide in 2015, Gary O’Dowd is determined to turn his grief into something positive, with the hope that it may help others. The Bearded Man’s Battle for Suicide Prevention campaign was born when Gary started growing his beard to honour his father, who always sported some form of facial hair.

The charity fundraiser event set for July 16, in Jack Duggan’s Bar, Castlemaine, at 8pm, is a “shave or grow” event. It was launched with the help of Kerry TD Michael Healy-Rae last Friday.

The public will decide whether Gary should shave his beard off, or keep it for another year. Should they vote to keep the beard, Gary will shave his hair off instead. With local music, DJ, spot prizes and the chance for you to nominate your friends to get waxed, it’s sure to be a great night.

The Bearded Man campaign has raised over €500 so far online and the Facebook page has reached over a thousand likes in just one month. Through JustGiving, a fundraising website, supporters can donate any amount which goes directly to the charities involved. Link: https://www.justgiving.com/teams/thebeardedman.

A text campaign was also recently launched with Deputy Michael Healy-Rae coming on board to show his support. Supporters can Text SWCC to 50300 to donate €4. (*Text costs €4. SouthWest Counselling Centre will receive a minimum of €3.25) All money raised will be divided amongst Console and Kerry LifeLine.
Just one year after the death of Gary’s dad, Maurice O’Dowd, the Bearded Man campaign was established.
With a goal of raising awareness and as much money possible, Gary decided to raise money for two charities which helped him and his family greatly after Maurice’s tragic death. Console and Kerry LifeLine/SouthWest Counselling Centre, Killarney, both offered a huge amount of support to the O’Dowd family and Gary wanted to show his appreciation to them by creating this event to raise some much-needed money and awareness of suicide prevention, support and for those also bereaved of affected by suicide in some way.

Gary has used social media to get his message across for far. On Facebook, Gary has uploaded multiple diary-entry style posts where he goes in to detail about the campaign, his father, and how losing his father as affected his life.

He also filmed a vlog where he explained his grief and what he hopes to get from the campaign. Gary’s overall motto is that he wants to help both charities as much as he can, so that they can continue helping others.
Just Giving: https://www.justgiving.com/teams/thebeardedman
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/garythebeardedman/
Text: SWCC to 50300 to Donate €4.  


 
Deputy Michael Healy-Rae helps Gary O’Dowd launch the Bearded Man text campaign.

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Motorists urged to be vigilant during deer breeding season

Deer are most active from late September until early November as the breeding season gets underway – but this causes huge problems for drivers especially from dawn and dusk. “While the rut is an amazing experience to witness it is also a time when there is an increased incident of road traffic accidents involving deer […]

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Deer are most active from late September until early November as the breeding season gets underway – but this causes huge problems for drivers especially from dawn and dusk.

“While the rut is an amazing experience to witness it is also a time when there is an increased incident of road traffic accidents involving deer as male deer go in search of females and younger males are ousted by dominant males forcing deer to cross roads and motorways,” Damien Hannigan from the Irish Deer Commission said.

Drivers are being advised to reduce speed, stay alert and dip their headlights as the full beam may cause the deer to freeze.

“If a deer has crossed in front of your vehicle, be aware that others may follow. Do not approach an injured deer. If you are involved in a deer road traffic accident or come across a deer that has been involved in a road traffic accident, immediately contact the local Gardaí.”

The Irish Deer Commission operate a humane deer dispatch scheme with 75 trained volunteers assisting agencies and charities who deal with an increasing number of deer vehicle collisions nationally.

On Sunday October 10 the Irish Deer Commission will hold a Red Deer Rut Watch event in Killarney National
Park. It has taken place in Killarney continuously for over 5,000 years and Killarney National Park is acknowledged as one of the best locations in Europe to observe the red deer rut.
This family friendly event is being hosted by the National Parks and Wildlife Service and is free. There will be talks by a Conservation Rangers and the Irish Deer Commission, along with a display of native red deer antlers.

Booking is available only online via visit www.irishdeercommission.ie.

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Happy Birthday Sham

Well-known Killarney character Seamus ‘Sham’ Courtney celebrated his 75th birthday yesterday (Thursday) at his favourite town centre watering hole. Sham who has entertained countless tourists over the years with his pronounced Kerry accent is one of the town’s best loved characters. One video recorded by RTE’s Today Show around the time of his 71st birthday […]

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Well-known Killarney character Seamus ‘Sham’ Courtney celebrated his 75th birthday yesterday (Thursday) at his favourite town centre watering hole.

Sham who has entertained countless tourists over the years with his pronounced Kerry accent is one of the town’s best loved characters.

One video recorded by RTE’s Today Show around the time of his 71st birthday has amassed 7.5 million viewers.

Yesterday he visited one of his favourite pubs, Jack C O’Shea’s on High St, where proprietors John and Joan O’Shea and their ever-present dog Ginny placed decorative balloons around the bar to mark the occasion.

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