The late Cian Neary with his beloved dog, Cooper
Longford woman, Michaela Cox, says she has no fear over losing her hair as she prepares to honour the memory of brave Killashee schoolboy Cian Neary.
A much-loved St Brigid's player, Cian tragically passed away last September following a courageous battle with cancer.
Nine months on, Cian's memory will be honoured as part of a novel fundraiser in aid of a charity which has since been set up in his name.
Cian's Kennels is an idea inspired by the late teenager's family in recognition of his penchant for animals and in particular their family dog 'Cooper' who would go on to become a key source of strength and support throughout his illness.
In a bid to recognise that bond and Cian's lasting legacy, Michaela says she wants to ensure other children get the same opportunity to have their pets by their side .
“In Cian's honour the Neary family are setting up Cian's Kennels - an animal boarding facility near the new Children's Hospital so that ill children can see their pets as often as their treatment and condition allows, giving them a sense of home and comfort through the hardest of times,” she said.
The fundraiser, which was only set up a little over two weeks ago, has surpassed its intended €1,500 target, much to Michaela's delight and satisfaction.
It's an occasion the former Mercy Secondary School Ballymahon student has chosen to coincide with her 24th birthday.
“It seemed like a good idea two weeks ago,” giggled Michaela as she pointed to how baldness is something she is not overly concerned about.
“Dad (Barry) has been bald for as long as I have been alive but at least mine will have the chance to grow back - his won't,” she quipped.
Joking aside, Michaela issued a heartfelt thank you to all those who had donated and said the occasion was one she hoped to share across various social media channels on Saturday week (July 4).
“People have just been fantastic,” she added.
“I think its popularity is because it is just an unreal cause and I have donated my hair before to help others with cancer.
“All money raised through this campaign will go to Cian's Kennels and will have a massive impact on the daily lives of sick children in Ireland.”
T0 donate, simply log onto Michaela's GoFundMe page: 'Head Shave for Cian's Kennels.'