Little Rónan’s passing inspires Crossfit competition in Toome

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Little Rónan battled right up until the end of his short life in the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children, according to his mum.

Now his parents, Aishleen and Colm Cunningham, who live in Bellaghy, are fundraising for the hospital which did so much for their son and family during his five months of life.

They have set up a crowdfunding JustGiving page, and this Saturday CrossFit Antrim, based in Toomebridge, are holding a special fundraising competition.

Already the £2,000 target they had set has been exceeded.

Rónan lived his whole life in hospital, 3rd January - 11th June 2017

Said Aishleen: “Rónan was diagnosed with CDH, Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia at 17 weeks into pregnancy. Due to the very large hernia Rónan’s lungs were severely underdeveloped and he was not expected to survive, but thankfully Rónan had other ideas.

“Rónan made it through pregnancy, despite complications, and surprised everyone after birth.

“He did give us a few scares, had major surgery and ongoing challenges, but in true Rónan style, he defied odds and fought on. We thought we had him here forever.”

She said they got to hold Rónan, hug him, kiss him and love him.

“Despite everything he faced he was a happy little boy with such a bright personality. His laugh and smile would light up his whole face and ours too.

“For five months Colm and I had the chance to know and love our son and his sisters Niamh and Bronagh were able to meet and hold their baby brother. For this we are forever grateful,” she continued.

“Unfortunately as Rónan grew, his lungs were not able to cope and although his hospital team tried everything possible, the fight to live was becoming too much for our beautiful baby boy. Rónan passed away peacefully in our arms.”

Crossfit Antrim, located at Roguery Road are hoping to have 20 teams entered for this weekend’s ‘RX for Rónan’. The workout will not be overly technical in nature so you do not have to be a CrossFitte to enter. The proceeds will go towards the hospital.