On Saturday 4th July Mark Doyle from Ballyward, Castlewellan celebrated his 30th birthday by climbing 7 peaks of the Mourne Mountains in support of Air Ambulance NI.

The local engineer decided to take part in this huge challenge on his birthday in memory of his late aunt, Marian McCaul.  Mark explained, “The charity is particularly close to my heart as I am undertaking the challenge in loving memory of my dear Aunt Marian McCaul who passed away in April 2019. We are forever grateful to Air Ambulance NI for the service that they provided to her when she needed them.  Our Air Ambulance is a vital service for the areas surrounding the Mournes. It has been tasked to the Newry, Mourne and Down Council more than with any other, to road traffic collisions, farming, domestic and workplace accidents bringing the hospital to the patient wherever they are.”

The route took Mark across the following 7 peaks: Slieve Loughshannagh, Slieve Meelbeg, Slieve Meelmore, Slieve Bernagh, Slievenagloch, Slieve Commedagh and finishing at Slieve Donard.  As you can see he was fully supported along the way by his family and friends who provided a great boost of encouragement.

Area Fundraising Manager, Colleen Milligan, was delighted with Marks support for the charity; “We continue to be overwhelmed by the type of support we receive from the community.  I am so privileged to be in a job where I can meet people like Mark who are so selfless and kind.  A 30th birthday is a time for celebration and Mark chose to spend his by thinking of others in memory of his Aunt Marian.  Marks fundraising efforts are incredible having raised almost £5000 on his JustGiving page for the charity.  He is obviously a very popular young man and surrounded by a great number of family and friends.  We want to say a huge thank you to Mark, his family and all those who donated so generously to his page. As a service we rely heavily on charitable donations to keep the medical team in the air, delivering critical care to patients who have suffered trauma throughout Northern Ireland- without this type of support, the team simply couldn’t fly.  Every single penny counts.”

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