Ian’s Trust, a charity for children with acquired brain injuries, are holding their annual ‘to the moon and back’ event in this next weekend.
Ian’s Trust was founded by the parents of Ian Cusack, who passed away tragically two years ago, aged 9, due to an acquired brain injury sustained four years previous, when he was struck by a car outside his home in Clarina.
The event is called To The Moon and Back, explained Ian’s mother Oorla Cusack, because she told Ian every day “she loved him to the moon and back”.
Mrs Cusack said Ian was an active child who loved swimming and playing on his holidays in Kilkee before the accident.
“It’s six years this year since his accident, he would have been 11 this year. He would have being doing the 10km, he was that type of a child,” she said.
It is a family event for people of all fitness levels and participants can choose between doing a 60 kilometre cycle or a 10 kilometre run/walk.
Ian’s trust was granted charity status a month and a half ago after fundraising efforts over the course of a year and a half.
Mrs Cusack said that during the four years Ian lived with an acquired brain injury they had very little support, as Ireland only has acquired brain injury organisation for adults.
She explained that the family had to fight for every service they received for Ian after the accident.
“What we found on our journey with Ian was that the people were fantastic; it was just that we were fighting against the system,” she explained.
“I am a nurse myself and I worked in Temple Street. Because I was a nurse I knew the care that he needed, I just kept fighting and we got it eventually,” said Mrs Cusack.
Ian was five when he was hit by a car outside his home. He had to under go surgery to relieve the swelling in his brain and was paralysed and unable to speak.
“His last words were at the scene of the accident: ‘Pick me up daddy’, he never ever spoke after that again.
“You can let something like this just kill you, but we felt that we wanted to take a positive out of such an awful situation. We have to live our lives and live Ian’s dreams for him. The last thing he would want us to do is to lie down and not get up in the morning,” added Mrs Cusack.
The To the Moon and Back cycle and run takes place this Saturday, August 16 in Kilkee. See Ian’s Trust for full details.