Today’s ‘Trucking for Creeslough’ fundraiser has been hailed as a huge success, with close to 500 drivers making a poignant journey to remember.
The trucking community came in their droves to make a special tour to Creeslough this afternoon to raise funds for the victims of October’s explosion.
Young Hamish O’Flaherty from Dunfanaghy led the convoy as a ‘co-driver’ alongside event organiser Colin Kilpatrick. Hamish, aged 12, did the run in memory of his father, James, who lost his life in the tragedy.
Local lorry driver Colin from St. Johnston was one of the first responders on the scene moments after the blast on Friday 7th October. He rushed to help move debris and comforted the injured until ambulances arrived. One of the men Colin helped remove from the scene was James, who, along with the other nine victims, were in the hearts and minds of all today.
Colin and Hamish ably led the truckers from Bernard Long’s yard in Ballybofey to Letterkenny, where the convoy grew even more, and proceeded onwards to Creeslough. A wreath was placed at the site of the explosion before the drivers turned to travel to the Silver Tassie Hotel via Milford.
Organisers were overwhelmed by the show of support from the trucking community today. The estimated figure of 200 lorries doubled by the time they reached Letterkenny’s Polestar roundabout, with each driver offering a generous donation to the fund.
Colin had the support of his employer, Bernard Long, Bernard’s son Patrick and his colleague Dean Mc Laughlin as he undertook the major task of running the event safely, with gardaí offering invaluable assistance in traffic management.
The fundraising continues this Saturday evening at the Silver Tassie, where an auction and dance will take place from 8pm. Doors open 7pm.
Tony Morning will be at the helm for the exciting auction, where there will be something for everyone, including new tyres, hotel breaks, rally experiences, tools and even sheep. Among the exciting lots are a one of a kind signed Ireland jersey, donated by Shane Duffy, as well as A P Mc Coy’s whip and a signed Donegal jersey. The evening will round off with dancing to the David Craig Band and DJ Tubbsy, as well as more special guests to be announced. All welcome.