Alisha Jordan, the young GAA athlete who was brutally assaulted in New York City in July 2012, has revealed that she was struck by tragedy once more when her father passed away last June.
The 22-year-old Co. Meath native had been walking home in the early hours of the morning when she was attacked with a brick – she suffered two broken cheekbones, a broken nose, fractures to both orbital bones, an almost full set of broken teeth, and nerve damage that made her lose sight for two weeks.
Doctors said she couldn’t play Gaelic Football again - but the dedicated athlete is set to play in the All-Ireland Ladies Junior Football Championship this coming Sunday in Croke Park, the Independent reported.
Speaking of her recovery and her upcoming game on Ryan Tubridy’s RTE 2FM, she said that she was only back in Ireland for a few months: “I go back to New York in a few weeks,” she said. “Unfortunately, my father passed away in June.”
“He died suddenly,” Jordan said. “He wasn’t feeling well one morning, so my sister brought him into the hospital and his organs failed from there. I jumped on the first flight home and I tried to make it home in time.
“I had just landed in Dublin airport when I got the phone call that he passed away. It threw me back into the whole situation again,” she explained. “I went through the ‘why me?’ stage, as I did when I was attacked.”
The young footballer said that coping with this type of tragedy would be different.
“When I was attacked, I could deal with it myself. It’s something that happened to me. I could take on whatever was wrong. With this, you have to rely on your family and friends to help you through it.”
She said her New York GAA team has been supporting her through the devastating time: “We’ve trained so hard all year. They’ve been my crutch and support system. It’s an added incentive for us to go ahead.”
Listen to her interview with Ryan Tubridy: