Fionn's fundraiser | 

Galway dad reveals how ‘quick-thinking’ pals saved son from drowning after freak accident

Fionn Silke (17) was heading for the last swim of his holidays in Croatia last July when he dived into the water and broke his neck on a sandbank

Fionn Silke.

Maeve McTaggartSunday World

A Galway dad has told the shocking story of the swimming accident that has left his son (17) with life-changing injuries.

Fionn Silke was heading for the last swim of his holidays in Croatia last July when he dived into the water and broke his neck on a sandbank.

His dad told GalwayBay FM that it was quick-thinking pals that “saved him from drowning” – as Fionn’s injuries could have been much worse.

Paramedics rushed Fionn to a neurosurgeon in Bosnia-Herzegovina, where he spent ten days and underwent five hours of neurosurgery.

He then spent months rehabilitating in Dublin’s Mater Hospital.

Family are hopeful that Fionn has a fighting chance of improving, and are working to raise vital funds to bring the teen to a hugely-accomplished neurosurgeon in Australia.

Almost €48k of the €50,000 goal has been raised so far in what the family is calling “the Fionndraiser.”

“Fun loving and full of beans he loved the outdoors while growing up,” his family writes.

“Fishing and football are two boyhood passions. In football he started with Oughterard AFC before moving to play with Salthill Devon and also played with the Galway Town Team before joining Mayo to play in the U15 National League.”

The young athlete’s sporting days were dashed when he suffered his C6/C7 Spinal Cord injury in Croatia last July.

“There is hope that Fionn will continue to improve, particularly with the help of the pioneering work driven by Ken Ware in his NeuroPhysics Therapy Institute in Australia,” they added.

Donors have rushed to wish Fionn the best in his recovery, while hoping to raise enough funds to get him to Dr Ken Ware.

"You are an extraordinary young man Fionn,” one writes.

"Fionn, keep being you… the positive, strong young man.

"Everyone is behind you,” another writes.

"You’re making an amazing recovery Fionn. Keep going! Everyone knows you’re the best Silke,” one added.

The GoFundMe to support Fionn can be found here.


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