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Heroes firefighters and volunteers save ancient woods and homes

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OUR HEROES: Members of Killarney Fire Service who put themselves in the line of fire to tackle the largest blaze ever at Killarney National Park were: Martin O’Grady, Paudie Mangan (Station Officer), John O’Grady, Pat Fleming, Sinead Galvin, James Kissane, Denis Mangan and Jonathan Cronin. Missing from photo are: Brendan Connors, Gary Cassidy and Anthony Breen. Photo: Michelle Crean

 

By Michelle Crean

 

The heroes of the weekend were the dedicated firefighters and volunteers who worked tirelessly with little time for rest – until the fires were fully under control.

Killarney Station Officer Paudie Mangan has praised all involved in tackling the fires and the tremendous support received by the community who provided food and drinks to the tired workers and volunteers.

Initially when called out on Friday night he described how the fire was “fairly alright” but how the “strong wind developed the fire very quickly”.

At that stage there was only one crew at the scene when another call came in for the Coolies area and Kenmare Fire Service had to be dispatched.

As the fire on the Kenmare Road got stronger and close to the road at Dinis, the Killorglin crew joined the fight. Kenmare then left Coolies and fell in with them.

“It was heading up to the Eagle’s Nest and the Long Range River – that was an all nighter. We had everyone on low ground and it was extinguished by 5am.”

Killorglin and Kenmare crews were stood down but the Killarney crew stayed on the scene monitoring the fire on the mountains which they had had no access to.

“At first light I contacted the Park Rangers as the ancient wood, if that caught fire there would have been severe consequences for the park.”

Killarney Water Rescue helping firefighters get across the lake.

The first helicopter arrived on scene at 2pm on Saturday. A fire crew was deployed to the Long Range River, Doogary and Tower Woods. The Killarney, Sneem and Killorglin crews were also on scene as well. Killarney Water Rescue brought some of the fire fighters across the river “with great difficulty” as hoses and pipes had to go into a second boat.

“The terrain was a big challenge, a lot of hard work, but it paid off.”

On Sunday crews again went by boat to Doogary Woods. Later Killarney, Kenmare, Killorglin and Macroom tackled the fires in the Black Valley until 1.30am with Killarney fire crews staying on scene until 3am as a precaution.

He added that the fires came as close to 10 metres of the school.

By first light on Monday a private chopper came on scene.

“Our concern was that the fire was going over towards Tomies Wood. The chopper was trying to extinguish the top of Tomies mountain and the Air Corp joined at 10.30am and the fire was under control before lunchtime on Monday. The choppers remained for most of the evening to make sure there was no danger.”

In his 30 years service, Paudie said that it is the largest fire of his career.

“I want to say thank you to every neighbouring brigades that fell in. All worked extremely hard and everybody gave it their all.”

COMMUNITY SUPPORT

Over the course of the three long days and nights on duty, they had little time to eat – and Paudie said he’d like to say a huge thank you to the communty who came to their aid.

“On behalf of Killarney Fire Brigade, we would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone in the community of Killarney for the donations of food and refreshments over the weekend. The generosity of the people of Killarney and surrounding communities never ceases to amaze us. The thoughtfulness of everyone, from the people who dropped sandwiches, water, fruit and snacks and homebaking and all the businesses who gave us refreshments. They’re are too many to mention, but we wish to thank each of you most sincerely for your generosity, we really appreciate it all.”

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The secret is in the book!

By Michelle Crean  The secret to finding your true happiness is all in a new book which will guide readers to unlock their potential. Brazilian native Michelle Hadad, who moved to Ireland 14 years ago has written ‘The Secret Box: Concave and Convex’, a 432 page book which addresses the issues of suicide and develops into […]

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By Michelle Crean
 

The secret to finding your true happiness is all in a new book which will guide readers to unlock their potential.

Brazilian native Michelle Hadad, who moved to Ireland 14 years ago has written ‘The Secret Box: Concave and Convex’, a 432 page book which addresses the issues of suicide and develops into two different narratives.

It is also a follow up to her previous work ‘The Secret Box…Finding the Key’, a 192 page paperback launched by Michael Healy-Rae TD and reviewed by now retired judge James O’Connor, in October 2017.

Michelle, who studied adult psychology and is a NLP practitioner who encourages clients to transform limiting self-beliefs, explains that this version continues the story of Maria from the first book.

In the first book, the reader compares and contrasts their own life experiences with those of Maria and ask themselves the very question posed at the end of the book in the final chapter or ‘Padlock 13’ – “who are you?”

“Readers are outside the box, they see their own stories – that’s when we judge others,” Michelle told the Killarney Advertiser.

“It is fiction and the story is in two versions, the positive is bigger than the negative. There is always hope regardless of pain.”

She added that people need to forget about what others think, and focus on their own values and traditions.

“It’s a self help book, it doesn’t matter what people think of us, life’s too short. I’m motivating people in a positive way because of my NLP and psychology qualification.”

However, she emphasised that readers don’t have to have read the first book to understand the second one.

“Maria is the leading figure and there’s a few characters from book one but you don’t have to read that to get book two.”

She added that she’s thankful to everyone who helped her along the way.

“I have been blessed to have met so many people to help with my books.”

Both books are available from O’Connor’s Centra, The Reeks and Horans Health Store on Beech Road.

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Green light for teen accommodation

By Michelle Crean  Plans for sheltered accommodation to house homeless teenagers in foster care have been given the go ahead. An Bord Pleanala has approved a three-storey building in Flemings Lane just off High Street, which will have eight bedrooms, two one bedroom apartments and one two bedroom apartment. The teens living within the premises […]

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By Michelle Crean
 

Plans for sheltered accommodation to house homeless teenagers in foster care have been given the go ahead.

An Bord Pleanala has approved a three-storey building in Flemings Lane just off High Street, which will have eight bedrooms, two one bedroom apartments and one two bedroom apartment.

The teens living within the premises will be supervised by applicant Eileen O’Brien who will live on the ground floor of the premises.

The two one-bed apartments on the second floor would either be rented out or used for independent living for the teenagers as they reach adulthood.

The two-bed apartment will be on the third floor. There are also plans for balconies at second and third floor levels.

The proposed apartment building is contemporary in design with a mix of stone and render finish on the lower floors and synthetic burned timber finish on the upper floors. The second floor is recessed at the front and the third floor is recessed at the front and the rear with a decorative feature on the front elevation comprising dark grey timber steel poles. The building will also have a flat roof.

Planning permission was granted subject to 14 conditions including a two-metre high boundary wall to be constructed on south, south-western boundaries of the site and there’s to be no overnight commercial guest accommodation.

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Fans return to Fitzgerald Stadium after eight months

By Sean Moriarty Officials from Fitzgerald Stadium remain hopeful that crowd capacity at the venue can be increased to 500 spectators in time for the Munster final on July 25 – subject to both national health guidelines and Kerry qualifying for the game. Last Saturday evening’s National League semi-final between Kerry and Tyrone was the […]

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By Sean Moriarty

Officials from Fitzgerald Stadium remain hopeful that crowd capacity at the venue can be increased to 500 spectators in time for the Munster final on July 25 – subject to both national health guidelines and Kerry qualifying for the game.

Last Saturday evening’s National League semi-final between Kerry and Tyrone was the first game at the stadium since the 2020 Kerry Petroleum Intermediate Club Football Championship Quarter-Final when Glenbeigh-Glencar played Beaufort on October 4 last year.

Due to current restrictions only 200 fans were allowed attend Saturday’s big match. That will remain in place for Kerry’s opening Munster Championship tie with Clare on June 26.

“It had been more than eight months since Fitzgerald Stadium welcomed back fans to the venue,” stadium PRO Tatyana McGough told the Killarney Advertiser. “Everything went exceptionally well.”

She is hopeful that more restrictions will be eased on July 5, paving the way for an increase in capacity to 500 fans in time for the July 25 Munster Final.

“It is likely that from July 5 up to 500 spectators may be permitted to attend games. We hope this number will increase for the Munster Final. If it is a Cork versus Kerry Munster Final the game will be fixed for Sunday July 25 at 4pm in the Fitzgerald Stadium. The stadium’s staff are very confident in being able to host any number of fans that may be allowed.”

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