Hundreds expected to take part in CRY Monagea in West Limerick this Saturday 

Norma Prendiville

Reporter:

Norma Prendiville

The organising committee for CRY Monagea get ready for the event

The organising committee for CRY Monagea get ready for the event

SIX years after it was first held, CRY Monagea continues to inspire.

And the organisers are hoping that this Saturday’s event will live up to the high bar set in previous years when over 700 walkers, runners and cyclists took off from Monagea around the roads of West Limerick.

It is an event that began in sorrow and as a way for two devastated families and their community to keep alive the memory of two young people lost too soon to sudden death, Niamh Herlihy and Darra O’Donovan. Niamh was just 21 while Darra was a lad of 15.

But now, it has become one of the flagship fundraisers for the Cardiac Risk in the Young organisation.

Crucially too, it has contributed hugely to raising awareness of the risks of  sudden death syndrome throughout West Limerick.

And it has given the Herlihy and Scanlan families and their community a sense of achievement and of grace at being able to remember with love.

From the beginning too, the event has sought to help those affected, by raising much needed funds for CRY Ireland, the organisation which supports families affected by sudden death syndrome  and also provides vital screening for family members.

It also helps fund research into cardiac risk in the young, which claims as many as 70 young lives each year in Ireland.

But the event has also developed into a huge social event with a small army of volunteers from Monagea and surrounding parishes helping at registration, along the routes and in the refreshment hall. Club members of Desmond Sportive provide vital back-up and know-how to the organising committee.

CRY Monagea has, in addition, won the support and admiration of experienced cyclists with its West Limerick Endurance 125  which, at 125km, does exactly what it says on the tin.

It demands and indeed challenges endurance but is popular among club cyclists who come from all over the country to take part.

There are, fortunately, less formidable challenges: a 70km and a 100km route, and for the past two years, a 25km route has been added to the programme and has become a favourite for families and those starting out on their cycling lives.

The 10km walk/run continues to be a huge attraction with over 400 signing up for the event last year.

Early on-line registration for the cycles is advised and comes with a discount.

Go to Facebook or simply google West Limerick Endurance to get started. But registration also takes place in Monagea hall this Friday evening from 7pm to 9pm and again at 7.30am on Saturday morning.

The cyclists are due to take off at 9am while the walkers and runners have a start time of 11am.

All the organisers are hoping for now is a fine day or at the very least, a dry one.