'Fight for our baby worth it' as parents are honoured
The couple who sparked an overhaul of Ireland's maternity services have said that winning a Rehab People of the Year award is "surreal".
Mark and Roisin Molloy, from Co Offaly, lost their baby boy, Mark, shortly after his birth in 2012.
Their questions over how the tot died eventually led to a damning HIQA report on the Midlands Regional Hospital's maternity unit.
Speaking to the Herald, Ms Molloy said they were delighted with the award.
"When we heard that we were nominated, we were shocked," she said.
"Then we started thinking about it - that we, as ordinary people, stepped up and made a difference.
"It's surreal. It's good to know that there's an acknowledgement. Our battle was worth it."
After baby Mark's death, the Molloys had questions about how he lost his life.
It was initially classed as a stillbirth, even though he was alive after delivery.
The couple's determination led to the HSE changing the recorded cause of his death.
To this day, Ms Molloy still receives calls from parents who have had similar experiences.
"They're so desperate, and I think they just need to know that there's an afterwards," she said.
Brother Kevin Crowley was also honoured for his work in feeding the homeless at Dublin's Capuchin Day Centre.
Olympic medallists Annalise Murphy and brothers Paul and Gary O'Donovan shared the award for Sports Person of the Year.
Robbie Keane took home the International Person of the Year Award, while Ireland's Paralympic medallists were also recognised for their feats.
Davitt Walsh, who rescued baby Rioghnach-Ann McGrotty from the Buncrana pier tragedy, and Alan Herdman, who saved seven children from drowning in Co Galway, were also commended.
Other winners include charity Amen and young busker Milo McCarthy.
Rehab Group CEO Mo Flynn congratulated the winners, saying their "stories and achievements inspire everyone around them".