First Public Access Defibrillator unveiled in Crossmaglen

January 4, 2016

A newly-installed defibrillator was unveiled in Crossmaglen this weekend.

The life-saving equipment, located at Cardinal O’Fiach Square, beside the Bottom Drawer, will be available for public use and has been sponsored anonymously by a generous member of the community via the Crossmaglen and District First Responders group.

The Public Access Cabinet is dedicated in memory of one of Crossmaglen’s own, Molly Fitzparick (nee Clarke), who passed away in December.  On Saturday,  Molly’s grandchildren, Oisin, MIchael, Emily and Grace proudly unveiled  the  essential piece of life-saving equipment in honour of their grandmother.

Vice Chairperson of Newry, Mourne and Down District Council Gillian Fitzpatrick, Molly Fitzpatrick’s daughter-in-law, attended the launch along with MLA’s Megan Fearon and Karen McKevitt and local SDLP councillors Geraldine Donnelly and Peter Byrne and members of the First Responders Team.

The defibrillator can only be accessed by secure pin code given by Ambulance Service when 999 is contacted to report a cardiac arrest. It can be used by any member of the community should they come across an arrest. The device is simple and safe and gives clear spoken instructions so users do not require training to operate one. Once in position, the defibrillator detects the heart’s rhythm and will not deliver a shock unless one is needed.

Speaking after the launch of the Public Access Defibrillator, Crossmaglen & District Community First Responder Chairman Damien Martin said he is proud to see the life-saving device installed in the town.

“Today saw another milestone reached in Crossmaglen where I, with the help of the Grandchildren of Molly Fitzpatrick launched our First Public Access Defibrillator,” said Damien.

“Thanks to everyone who came along to show their support and many thanks to Mines Electrical and Byrne Monumental who provided help and support installing the defibrillator.

“We are also very grateful to Crossmaglen Fire and Rescue Service and the PSNI for all their support.

“Our aim is to install one of these in all our local villages of Culloville, Cullyhanna, Silverbridge and Creggan/Glassdrumman,” added Damien.

“We are pleased to announce that a second Public Access Defibrillator will be unveiled in Cullyhanna on Saturday 16th January at 12 noon.  This is as a result of a very generous donation by Parish Priest, Fr. Kevin Cullen.”