Limerick Marine Search and Rescue set to have a ball


Nick Rabbitts


Nick Rabbitts

Limerick Marine Search and Rescue set to have a ball

Pictured at Limerick Marine Search and Rescue’s premises are Joe Morgan, Jimmy Connors and Holly Kemmy Picture: Cian Reinhardt/ILoveLimerick

ONE of Limerick city’s best loved and most respected charities will mark its 30th anniversary with a Black Tie Ball on October 21.

Limerick Marine Search and Rescue, which provides river-based support to the fire service, the gardai and the coastguard, was founded in 1986.

And to celebrate their anniversary, Joe Morgan, its chair, has organised a black-tie fundraiser at the Limerick Strand Hotel on Friday, October 21 next.

As the service is completely reliant on volunteers, all proceeds from this night will go to ensure the charity’s volunteers are well trained, kitted out, and continue to be available on a 24/7 basis.

The charity was set up by Jimmy Connors and Tony Cusack who were both sports divers at the time.

They were asked to help search for a young boy who had lost his life in the river near Parteen.

It was following this incident the two men decided there was a necessity for a marine, search and rescue service in the city.

And in a meeting on December 6, 1986 in Ger Fahy’s bar at the Dock Road (which is now Dolan’s), Limerick Marine Search and Rescue was established.

The organisation has state-of-the-art equipment to help keep the people of Limerick safe in unpredictable waters.

It also holds pontoons along the waters of Limerick equipped with boats which were established with the help of donations. As a result from these, Limerick Marine Search and Rescue are incredibly responsive in an emergency call due to their quick accessibility to the water.

Jimmy says that 30 years on, the charity is “stronger than ever”.

“We feel so proud that the people of Limerick helped to create it. We are so grateful to JP McManus and to the other people who have given us big donations to keep us afloat, but also to the people of Limerick for keeping our dream alive. To see it grow from here, for it to go further, would be incredible,” he said.

In total, Limerick Marine Search and Rescue has 26 volunteers who not only patrol the Shannon, but also hold summer camps to teach adults and children about water safety.

Jimmy praised everyone who down through the years has supported the charity, saying: “It wouldn’t exist without the people who’ve had pub quizzes, fundraisers and run marathons for us.”

The fundraising ball, he added, is vitally important for the future of Limerick Marine Search and Rescue.

The tickets for the Black Tie Ball are €100 and are available at the Limerick Strand Hotel on 061-421800.