Man of the Year Paddy Conaghan Completes Second Open-Water Swimming Journey Around Ireland’s Coast
Eileen Magnier, North West Correspondent for RTÉ, (Ireland’s National Public Service Media) reported the latest achievement of our Man of the Year, Paddy Conaghan. Paddy swam at over 500 piers and beaches on his journey around the coastline, completing 515 swims in 98 days.
The journey was not an easy one as Paddy left his home in Árainn Mhór on December 5th, and drove this time anti-clockwise around the coast of Ireland. He lived out of a van, meeting up with groups of people to swim every day at several locations in each county along the route.
In an interview with Magnier, Paddy said, “It is more important now than ever before to raise awareness for mental health and help these charities to continue to do the amazing work that they are doing.” His “Ducking and Driving around Ireland” adventure raised over €10,000 for a number of mental health-related charities and the RNLI.
This is the second time that Paddy has driven around the coast of Ireland in an open-water swimming challenge, having completed his first journey in February 2022 and raising over €100,000 for a Donegal-based counseling charity.
Magnier reported, “the final leg of his journey from An Clochán Liath to the ferryport at Ailt an Chorráin was traveled with a garda escort and he was congratulated by singer Daniel O’Donnell and members of the RNLI, before taking the Blue Ferry to Árainn Mhór and a great welcome home by neighbors and friends, among them Elaine Grady, who has been doing all the social media for Paddy’s challenges.”
Arriving back on the island, Paddy decided not to have a final swim there.
He said it was not about “finishing the challenge but leaving the door opened for someone else to take up the next challenge. It’s about the journey, not the end.”
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