“My body was completely broken, but I didn’t realise I would never see him again.”
These are the words of Gillian Treacy, mother of four year old Ciarán who was killed in a head-on collision with a drunk driver in April 2014.
Gillian’s story and that of her husband Ronan, from Portarlington and Offaly Emergency Services who attended the collision, and the medical teams in Portlaoise and Tullamore hospitals who fought to save Ciarán and Gillians lives are featured in the latest ‘Crashed Lives’ ad campaign from the Road Safety Authority (RSA) and An Garda Síochána.
The ad was launched last week as part of the RSA and Garda annual Christmas and New Year Road Safety Campaign.
Ciarán was just four years old when the car he was travelling in with his mother Gillian and brother Seán was hit by drunk-driver Finbar O'Rourke. Gillian was left with devastating injuries as a result of the crash.
The ad features home videos of Ciarán playing with his brother Seán and sister Caoimhe in the garden and laughing and smiling in the car, a picture of happiness and innocence.
The main ad features Ronan and Gillian, Sergeant Dave Lynam and Paramedic Christy Kelly who attended the collision, and Nurses Patrice O’Connell and Mary Joyce who fought to save Ciarán’s life.
The message behind the ‘Crashed Lives’ campaign is that drink driving destroys lives, families and communities.
Speaking before the launch, Gillian Treacy said:
“Thursday 17 April 2014 was the day our lives were shattered because of drink-driving. As a mother, your instinct is to protect your children from any harm that might come their way but I wasn’t able to do this for Ciarán.
“Because someone decided to drink and drive that day, and his actions led to the death of my little boy. Our lives will never be the same again. I beg anyone who would think of drinking and driving to think of my little boy, and to think of the devastated family and community still mourning his loss,” said Gillian.
The campaign includes a number of short films of the family on YouTube. Other emerergency service staff, and people affected are also included.
These include: Gary Finlay, Paramedic, firefighter Greg Donagher.
Ciarán's brother Seán is also featured as are father and son Emett and Ciarán O'Manhony who were first on the scene.
The campaign will run for two years on TV and other media . See also