The village came to a standstill last month to honour Stephen O’Brien who lost his fight on January 20th 2022. Stephen (late of TK Maxx), was the dearly loved husband of Kate (née Nodwell) and much loved father of Rosie, and will be sadly missed by his loving wife and daughter, parents Jimmy and Pat and sister Sarah, brother Danny, mother-in-law Joan, brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, nephews, nieces, relatives and a large circle of friends.
Stephen was the July 2014 Blarney Person of The Month. “In 2011 Stephen O’Brien thought he might die while awaiting a double lung transplant but he defied the odds to become a Cork sporting success story. Stephen arrived home to a hero’s reception after claiming two bronze medals at the European Heart and Lung Transplant Games. The cystic fibrosis sufferer won cycling and badminton medals as part of an Irish team that travelled to Vilnius, Lithuania, for the event. Two-and-a-half years before this, Stephen underwent a 12-hour double-lung transplant and was in a medically induced coma for several days. Prior to the operation, he was using an oxygen machine almost all day and was eventually put on a machine which basically breathed for him. The surgeons who carried out the transplant found Stephen’s lungs were so badly damaged, he may have only had a few weeks left to live. He left hospital three weeks after the operation and returned to work at TK Maxx five months later. Stephen went on to complete the 180km Ring of Kerry cycle and crowned his recovery by claiming two medals for Ireland in Lithuania. On his return home from the European Heart and Lung Transplant Games, Stephen was greeted by family and friends and members of the Cork branch of Cystic Fibrosis Ireland with Cathy Carlton of Cystic Fibrosis Ireland saying, “We’re very proud of Stephen. He is a wonderful young man.”
May he rest in peace