Rush man Lee Smith launches Go Fund Me for Dad

by Rose Barrett
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Rose Barrett

For Rush man, Lee Smith and his wife Louise, time and money are key priorities at the moment. Seven months ago, Lee’s dad Anthony aka Tony was diagnosed an aggressive form of MND.

Married to Rose, the 58-year-old was a busy chef who enjoyed work, golf and family time with his two sons, Lee and Jamie, and four grandchildren.

“My parents lived in Edenmore, off the Tonlegee road for 20 years, and they now live in Kells,” said Lee.

“Da worked as a chef in many places in Dublin, among them Kitty’s Bistro on Merrion Row, next O’Donoghue’s famous trad pub. He has a great sense of humour, is very family orientated – he basically worked his ass off for us!

“Wednesday and Sundays were his usual days off – Wednesdays were for golf, and Sunday for family days; then Friday nights the family went out together to the Goblet Pub on Malahide Road.”

Sadly, Tony was diagnosed with MND last year, and his diagnosis confirmed it was the aggressive type.

“Prior to his condition being confirmed, Da worked at the Glyde Inn, near Dundalk. He has all but lost the use of his legs now, and has gone from being able to slowly walk upstairs, to not being able to take even basic steps.

“He has been supplied with a medical bed, which is now in the dining room while we wait for the side garage to be converted as a bedroom /living room/ wash room.

“Everything happened so quickly, in the run up to Christmas when local builders were completely booked up. Da has been grant approved for the necessary works to be done up to the value of €26,500.

“Thanks to the amazing generosity of family right before Christmas, we raised a further €3,500. However, with the current construction climate, the costs of the conversion costs have skyrocketed!

Chef Tony is always up for a laugh

“New quotes are currently ranging from €35,000 to €43,000. So hence, Louise and I launched a GoFundMe page as we feel we will have a shortfall of €10,000.

“In a few short days, we’ve raised almost €3,000 already – we are so grateful for everyone’s generosity, especially as this is a difficult time of the year.

“Any remaining funds will be donated to the Irish MND Association on my Da’s behalf,” noted Lee.

But time is of the essence and the work needs to be done soon, to make Tony’s life more comfortable and home facilities more accessible.

Tony and Rose with their sons and grandchildren

Donations please to https://www.gofundme.com/f/help-tony-with-his-side-garage-conversion

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