Saturday 16 February 2019

Hotelier's 100km kayak raises over €10k for charity

Liam Anthony Griffin (middle), with Stephen Happe and David Feehan, pictured
above leaving Carne beach for Wales
Liam Anthony Griffin (middle), with Stephen Happe and David Feehan, pictured above leaving Carne beach for Wales
Liam Anthony Griffin and friends take on the fundraising kayak challenge

Anna Hayes

A local hotelier completed a 100km kayak journey from Carne to Wales, across St George's Channel to raise funds for the 3TS suicide prevention charity.

Liam Anthony Griffin, of the Griffin Hotel Group, was one of three men to undertake the gruelling challenge on what was a blazing hot day. The challenge was due to take place on July 8 but given the favourable weather conditions, the group decided to take on the task two weeks earlier than planned.

The trip took the trio a total of 14 hours and the fundraising effort has surpassed the €10,000 target set by the three men.

Commenting on the crossing, Mr Griffin said: 'The challenge was to create an amateur team, cross St George's Channel in a self sufficient manner and raise vital funds for suicide prevention, an area that affects all families in Ireland and one that is so under-funded by the state.'

They were, he said, thrilled to have succeeded in all of those aims: 'To arrive as a team on the sands of Wales was euphoric. We want to thank everyone who has supported us along the way, from support crews to our families who have not seen much of us over the last five months.'

Mr Griffin completed the challenge along with two Defence Forces members Private Stephen Happe and Private David Feehan. Mr Griffin had come up with the idea five months ago. The team was formed and four-and-a-half months of training followed.

The group left from Carne beach at 5.45 a.m. with fully stocked kayaks of water, food and first aid. While a support boat was on hand for emergencies, it was not needed. Despite sustaining an arm injury, Private Feehan refused to take a tow and ploughed through for the remaining distance.

The team expressed their thanks to everyone who had donated so far, saying that the donation page on Everyday Hero would remain live until the end of July.

They also thanked Skipper Pascal Ryan and his crew for supplying the support boat, Dermot Greer of Sailing Ireland who helped the team with navigational training, Maija Griffin who created the perfect food plan for the crossing and Mick O'Meara who was Mr Griffin's first ever kayak instructor and who supported the team through the challenge.

Wexford People

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