Family’s tragedy highlights importance of EpiPens

Eamonn Hogan.Eamonn Hogan.
Eamonn Hogan.
It was just over one year ago when Eamonn Hogan from Kilcoo collected his youngest daughter Alexandra from school and started the drive home.

However, tragedy stuck on June 13, 2023, when Eamonn was stung by a wasp. Unbeknown to him, he had a severe allergy which caused him to go into anaphylactic shock.

Eamonn pulled over as he knew something was wrong, got out of the van but immediately collapsed.

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His brave daughter Alexandra used her dad’s phone to call family and was soon connected via 999, to ambulance control who stayed on the line and dispatched an Emergency Ambulance and the Helicopter Emergency Medical Service (HEMS) team by air ambulance.

Eamonn’s children Brittanny (left), Brandon and Alex along with their mum, Corrina.Eamonn’s children Brittanny (left), Brandon and Alex along with their mum, Corrina.
Eamonn’s children Brittanny (left), Brandon and Alex along with their mum, Corrina.

Importantly, by-standers were able to provide CPR on Eamonn, until the arrival of emergency services.

Sadly, despite all best efforts, Eamonn died in hospital two days later on June 15, 2023.

To mark one year from the date of the accident, Eamonn’s family members visited the Air Ambulance, to see the helicopter and meet with the one of the Pilots who flies the aircraft.

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Eamonn’s wife, Corrina said, “We lost Eamonn so suddenly. It’s been a very difficult year.

"We are grateful that Eamonn had every possible chance and that me and our four children had a little time at hospital to be with him to say goodbye.

"Eamonn didn’t know that he had a wasp / bee sting allergy; we would also like to encourage anyone who has a known allergy to carry your EpiPen as this can be the difference between life and death.”

The family presented the charity with £1,000 raised in Eamonn’s memory which will go a long way to ensuring the medical team can reach a future patient.

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Corrina would particularly like to thank her colleagues at Make the Call, Department for Communities for raising a lot of this money.

She would also like to thank the bystanders who stopped to provide care and to all of the emergency services and staff in ICU for their compassion, dignity and vital care.

Kerry Anderson, Head of Fundraising, said, “It was lovely to meet with the Hogan family and our heartfelt thoughts continue to be with them, wishing them strength in their grief.

"We are all humbled that they have been able to think of others, giving hope to a future patient and family who need the services of Air Ambulance.

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"It is only with continued support that the charity is able to play its part in sustaining this service, with a fundraising need of almost £7,000 every day. We would like to thank everyone who contributed in Eamonn’s memory for their kindness.”

The charity Air Ambulance NI, in partnership with NIAS, provides the HEMS for Northern Ireland. The service brings urgent medical assistance to anywhere in the province, operating seven days a week for 12 hours per day.

The HEMS team attend patients who are seriously ill or injured, bringing emergency pre-hospital care direct to the casualty with the aim of saving lives, brains and limbs. The aircraft can reach anywhere in Northern Ireland in approximately twenty-five minutes. £2.5m needs to be raised via fundraising to keep the service operational.

Further information on the charity can be found by visiting www.airambulanceni.org alternatively you can contact the charity directly by emailing [email protected] or calling 028 9262 2677.