St Columb’s College in Derry organised a 5k run in memory of popular student Caolán McCrossan to help raise vital funds for children and young people with cancer.
Over 1000 participants took part in the first 5K run organised by the Friends of St Columb’s at the Quay in Derry, Londonderry in an evening that celebrated all that is good about the college, the local community and local businesses.
The evening was finished off with refreshments back at the college, providing an opportunity for the McCrossan family, their friends and the wider school community to remember and celebrate Caolán.
In memory of Caolán
13-year-old Caolán was a Year 10 pupil at St Columb’s College, a member of Oxford United Football Club and also played for the Doire Colmcille GAA team.
On top of his sporting ability Caolán was a keen musician, playing both the piano and saxophone; and often spent his summer holidays at the Gaeltacht eagerly practising his Irish language skills. Put simply Caolan was a busy teenager enjoying life to the full.
All this changed in December 2014, when Caolán was diagnosed with cancer of the pancreas, a rare form of cancer not usually seen in young people. Caolán spent a lot of his last months in The Royal Hospital for Sick Children in Belfast.
Paul's House provided the McCrossan family with a base to relax and also provided other family members with somewhere to meet up when they came to visit Caolán.
Sadly Caolán died on 17 February 2015, and the date chosen for the run was 4 June 2015 - the day when Caolán would have celebrated his 14th birthday.
CLIC Sargent Fundraising Manager Gareth McElduff said: "It was an amazing event supported by the whole community and a fitting way to remember such a sport-loving active young man.
"To date the figure raised is in excess of £18,000 and will go a long way to help young people and their families throughout Northern Ireland. A huge thank you to all those who helped make this possible.
"It is hard to imagine a better legacy for Caolán."