Ever noticed that most of Wicklow’s international sportstars are ladies? Katie Taylor and Fionnuala Britton are the most recent obvious examples. In 2012 there was another name added to that list when Helen Kearney came home from the London 2012 Paralympic Games with three medals. Helen’s victory was particularly exciting because Helen is from my home town of Dunlavin in West Wicklow and the daughter of our local doctor. The media highlight for Dunlavin is generally a few lines in the local papers but we were suddenly on the map when the town was mentioned on national and international news.
Everybody locally was aware of the progressive nature of Helen’s disability Friedreich’s Ataxia and really proud of her achievement. Helen’s horse Mister Cool looks calm in all the footage of the dressage events at the Paralympic Games. I however saw Mister Cool in an event a few weeks before the Paralympic Games. I was amazed that the 16.2hh gelding was so highly strung and he needed a long walk to calm him down even before the event. Helen deserves additional credit for her skills and calming influence!
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