Thursday 14 December 2017

Hero marathon runner saves life of boyhood friend's wife


Marathon runner Ken Maleady from Mullingar, Co Westmeath
Marathon runner Ken Maleady from Mullingar, Co Westmeath

A cardiology nurse saved the life of his childhood friend's wife when she collapsed while running the Dublin City Marathon.

Ken Maleady came to the rescue of Alan Leech's wife Mary in the closing stages of the race on Monday afternoon when she suddenly took ill.

Mr Maleady, a cardiologist specialist based at Connolly Hospital, Dublin, attended the same school as Mr Leech in Mullingar.

However, the pair only met each other at the marathon - more than a decade since they last spoke.

"I hadn't seen him in 12 years. When I got talking to her (Ms Leech) I was just asking how she was getting on and how the legs were doing," Mr Maleady told the Herald.

Once they inished their chat Mr Maleady decided to run ahead of Ms Leech - hoping to break his four previous times.

He said that later his legs were getting sore and he stopped for a break.

It was then that he looked back and saw that Ms Leech had collapsed.

"I knew by looking at her that she wasn't breathing," Mr Maleady said. He started CPR and mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.

Mr Maleady assisted a team of paramedics to get Mary into an ambulance before crossing the finish line with an impressive 4.12 time.

Meanwhile, Mr Leech didn't realise what had happened to his wife and began to search for her at the finish line.

He was told by race organisers that she had gone to hospital, but he didn't realise the seriousness of her condition.

The emotional husband yesterday told RTE Radio One's Ray D'Arcy Show that his wife "doesn't remember much about what happened".

He added that Mary remains in ICU in St Vincent's Hospital.

She is expected to make a full recovery.


"She had CT scans and brain scans and her vital organs are all looking good," Mr Leech added.

Earlier in the year talented sportsman John McHugh (23) died after collapsing during the Dublin half-marathon.

Mr McHugh suffered a cardiac event close to the finish in the Phoenix Park.

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