Some 350 cyclists took to their bikes a fortnight ago to raise funds for charity and honour the memory of a much-loved priest.
The fifth annual Fr. Colm O’Brien Memorial Cycle attracted 280 cyclists who made the trip from Clonmel to Tramore, while a further 70 took part in the shorter cycle from Waterford to Tramore.
In doing so they supported this year’s nominated charities, the Hospice in South Tipperary and Waterford.
“The numbers are increasing every year. It’s great to be able to support different charities while keeping Fr. Colm’s memory alive”, said his sister, Lisa O’Brien.
One of the organisers of the event, Lisa said the cycle had raised more than €57,000 in its first four years, with donations for this year yet to be fully counted.
In previous years funds have been donated to The Solas Centre in Waterford, Our Lady’s Childrens Hospital in Crumlin, St. Vincent de Paul, renovations carried out in local churches, Anam Cara Parental and Sibling Bereavement Support and The Robbie Forristal Fund.
Fr. Colm, who spent eight years in Ss Peter and Paul’s parish in Clonmel, was only 36 when he died on September 16 2009.
From an early age he decided that he wanted to be a priest and he attended St. John’s College, Waterford to study for the priesthood, completing his final year in Maynooth College.
He was ordained in June 2000 in St. Paul’s Church, Waterford and Ss Peter and Paul’s was his first posting before his transfer to the Holy Cross parish in Tramore.