Ireland's Eye: What's going on in the old sod this week
A look at news from around Ireland
She explained that Shane was an independent-minded teenager who liked to come and go as he pleased but had to leave his wheelchair outside the front door as there is no access ramp at their home in DeValera Park. He only brings the wheelchair in at night when it is time to lock up.
“What young fella of 16 should have to crawl in and out of his home on his hands and knees? We were promised by the council when we moved in three years ago that we would have wheelchair access. I told them I wasn’t going to move in until Shane could get in and they said not to worry that it would be sorted out in six months,” Teresa said.
She was only told this year to apply in writing for a grant but was informed in May that resources and the high number of applications didn’t allow for the works to be carried out this year.
The Dundons will soon take delivery of a custom-made wheelchair from the U.S. that will hopefully one day help the 16-year-old achieve his dream of representing Ireland at the Paralympics.
Bullied to Death
JUST four weeks ago the front page of the Leitrim Observer carried a picture of a smiling 15-year-old Ciara Pugsley from Dromahair engaging in one of the many pursuits that were a key part of her life as she participated in the Leitrim Sub-Aqua Club Swim, Fin and Snorkel from Jamestown to Drumsna.
Tragically Ciara was laid to rest in the new cemetery at Creevelea Abbey last Sunday, with vast crowds descending on the village for her removal on Saturday evening and again the following afternoon for her funeral.
In the days after Ciara’s tragic death on Wednesday, September 19, there has been strong condemnation of the online bullying that is widely believed to have led to Ciara taking her own life.
Questions have been asked in a stunned community and further afield about the merits of various websites, with one in particular website, ask.fm, coming in for a lot of criticism as a result of the bullying that Ciara was subjected to.
Ciara’s father Jonathan Pugsley appealed to young people to communicate with each other and their parents.
He said he wants young people to know that taking your own life “is not the right thing to do.”
“Just don’t do this, your family and your friends need you,” he added, saying that he wants Ciara’s unnecessary death to make young people and parents aware of cyber bullying.
He said he never thought his bubbly, chatty, confident daughter could be “vulnerable” to online bullying and he asked young friends to communicate “face to face” with each other.
Gardai (police) are investigating some of the last posts to Ciara on ask.fm. They are seeking to find the identities of some of the anonymous writers.
A friend of Ciara’s family, Eugene O’Neill, described the cyber-bullying as “dangerous” and “a lethal weapon.”
Speaking at Ciara’s funeral Mass, O’Neill stressed Ciara “did not want to die ... she was driven to it. She was driven to it by this appalling evil that has invaded our community. Internet bullying attacks our young most vulnerable people 24-7. They cannot get away from it.”
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