Offaly teen picks up youth award after saving friend's life on football pitch

Justin Kelly

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Justin Kelly

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news@offalyexpress.ie

Offaly teen picks up youth award after saving friend's life on football pitch

Minister for Justice and Equality Charlie Flanagan TD, Mr Michael Murphy, Killeshin Hotel, Mr Adam Mc Glade and Chief Supt John Scanlan

A young Edenderry student has picked up the overall individual award at the inaugural Laois and Offaly Garda Youth Awards which took place at the Killeshin Hotel, Portlaoise, Co Laois on Friday last, February 22.

Oaklands Community College student Adam McGlade was also a divisional award winner on the night after an extraordinary act on a football pitch helped save his friend's life.

On Saturday, October 20, 2018, Adam was playing an U16 soccer match with his club Derry Rovers football club at their home ground in Edenderry.

A corner kick was taken during this match and following on from this, there was a clash of heads between the Derry Rovers goalkeeper, Dara Swaine, and an opposing player. Dara was knocked out and remained unconscious on the field.

Adam was the nearest player to the injured goalkeeper when this occurred and saw him collapse. Dara was lying face down and Adam immediately turned him over realising the serious nature of the injury.

Adam called for help from the sideline and management team. The injured player's tongue had moved to the back of his throat and was obstructing his airway. Adam took it upon himself to administer first aid to the injured player and move his tongue forward and in doing this, opened up his airways and prevented him from being starved of oxygen.

Adam was subsequently joined by two first responders remained there until an ambulance arrived. The injured player was unconscious for 45 minutes. Paramedics requested a helicopter for a medical evacuation to Tallaght Hospital, such was the seriousness of the injury. 

The Garda award judges said: "There is no doubt that the quick intervention from Adam and the correct administration of first aid saved the injured player from far more serious consequences."

The injured player, Dara Swaine, has since made a full recovery and was able to join the awards ceremony on Friday as a guest of Adam's.

The remarkable aspect to this incident is that just one week previously, Adam had undertaken a First Aid Course as part of his Transition Year School Programme in Oaklands Community College.

"He applied the knowledge and skills he learnt and showed great bravery and courage at such a young age to help save the life of his teammate. Adam is a very unassuming young man and is a very worthy winner of the Laois/Offaly Overall Individual Award," the judges concluded.