A MAJOR fundraising event will take place this weekend to help a Northside man who was left paralysed from the chest down following an accident last summer.
Jonathan Ranson, a 21-year-old student from Clontarf, was in San Diego on a J1 visa when he broke his neck after diving into a swimming pool.
Doctors have told Jonathan that he is an ideal candidate to benefit from future medical advances in neurosurgery.
The nature of his fracture, his youth, his physical strength and his determination are all key factors in his favour.
However, he has been advised to keep fit and to stay well, both physically and mentally, so that he can reach his full potential.
Since Jonathan’s devastating accident, his family and friends, and the local community in Clontarf and surrounding areas, have rallied to offer help.
A series of fundraising events to raise vital funds to support his rehabilitation and medical needs are ongoing.
At the Mini Marathon in Dublin in June, 200 women ran under the banner ‘Team Jonathan Ranson’ and raised over 20k for the local student’s care.
This Sunday, October 18, over 350 guests will pack out the Hilton Hotel, Charlemont Place, for the Jonathan Ranson Trust Fashion Show.
— TeamJonathanRanson (@TeamJRanson) September 17, 2015
With fashion from Arnotts, The Edit by Caroline Donnelly, Lennon Courtney from Dunnes Stores, Costume, Pace, Ellen B and Shannon, as well as a wide range of fantastic spot prizes, a great evening’s entertainment is promised.
Dublin GAA star Jack McCaffrey, fresh from his All-Ireland exploits against Kerry, has agreed to take to the catwalk for his childhood friend.
Speaking at the launch of the show, Jack, a nominee for Player of the Year, said: “Jonathan is one of my oldest friends. We grew up across the road from each other and have been friends since we were babies.
“His accident was a horrific tragedy. It could have happened to anyone so I am delighted to be able to play my part and support the fundraising effort.”
TV presenter Pamela Flood is MC for the event.
“I live in Clontarf around the corner from Jonathan and his family,” said Pamela.
“His strength of character and determination in getting back to college this year, and to continuing to live his life to his full potential is remarkable.
“I am delighted to be able to play a part in this fantastic cause.”
Jonathan has shown tremendous courage since his accident and is determined to “keep fighting to live the fullest life I can”.
“Due to spinal damage I am paralysed from the chest down and have impaired/limited use of my arms, wrists and fingers,” he said.
“After two major operations in California I returned to Dublin, first to the Mater Hospital and then to the National Rehabilitation Hospital.
“Thanks to the staff at the NRH I have made great progress, regaining greater use of my arms and fingers – which I was advised was unlikely.
“I am determined to push myself to the limit and these improvements are very encouraging.”
Jonathan has been able to move back to his family home which has been modified for his needs, and returned to Trinity College last month to finish his degree in Business.
•A small number of tickets for the fashion show are still available, phone Orla Ranson on 086-8094035.
For more information on fundraising events and donations to help Jonathan, visit www.teamjonathanranson.com