Remembering Calum: A shining star who touched many lives

first_imgA smile, thumbs-up and a mantra that “every day is a good day” were the words and actions that guided the unique life of Letterkenny’s Calum Nugent.Despite living with serious illness and health issues for most of his 25 years, Calum packed in what seemed like several lifetimes worth of wonderful experiences that inspired everyone he met before he sadly passed away in May, 2018.Now, as the first anniversary of his passing approaches, we take a special look at the life of the young man who touched the hearts of so many – from his friends and family, right through to some of the most celebrated stars of sport, screen and music. Indeed, some of these famous names will play a role in hosting a special charity event being held in Letterkenny’s Clanree Hotel on May 3rd next to honour his memory and help raise funds to support the work of the Donegal Hospice and The Friends of Letterkenny University Hospital.Calum was born in London and was the first son of Pauline and Eddie Nugent.They returned to Ireland when Calum was two and resided in Carnamuggagh, Letterkenny, for most of Calum’s life where they are well-known and respected within their community.Calum, parents Pauline and Eddie and friend Kelly McIntyre inBilbao for the European Rugby Championship finals.Pauline and Eddie recall a fun loving, adorable boy who always had a permanent smile on his face and a unique sense of optimism and positivity. While he grew up a healthy young boy, as his development continued his mum Pauline, a nurse, says she began to notice that his movement appeared slightly different to his peers. His gait was slightly different and at times he would require balance assistance when negotiating steps or stairs.At aged six, things escalated quickly when he began to develop headaches and sickness and it became clear that something was not right. A diagnosis revealed he had a significant brain tumour at the back of his head near his brainstem that would require immediate surgery.Pauline explained: “They put him on life support and it looked like there was nothing they could do for him, but, Eddie insisted that he be brought to Dublin immediately. We left in a blue light ambulance.”Eddie adds: “Once he got to Beaumont Hospital I knew he had a chance. There was something we could hold on to.”While doctors battled for up to eight hours in surgery to relieve the huge pressure that had built up inside Calum’s head they encountered complications in the form of a bleed that forced them to halt proceedings with the surgery and he gradually slipped into a coma. Weeks passed and it appeared that while he had not deteriorated further, neither had he gained ground and concerns grew.She said: “He was just lying there and he could not do anything. It was week three going on four and the doctor said that except for the fact he still had a heart beat they would turn the machine off.Eddie said “I don’t believe it. I knew in his eyes that he can hear us’. We went in and said to Calum ‘Show us a sign. We know you can hear us – prove it’. That was when he made the smallest movement and started to squeeze Eddie’s thumb”.Eddie explains: “From there he just built up. The doctors did tests and said they were now getting a reaction from him.” These micro-movements signaled a new hope and they grew from this tiny effort into bigger movements and the slow but steady process of recovery that eventually saw Calum regain much of his movement, speech and ability to walk, was underway.He was taken off life support, had a tracheostomy and he had to be peg fed and after spending 28 weeks and 2 days in the Dublin hospital he was able to return home to Letterkenny hospital just before Christmas and shortly after he returned to his family home.Once he began to recover he returned to family life and by now had siblings Rhys, Jordan and Grace to share life with.Calum and his sister Grace.Calum with his brothers Rhys and Jordan.Over the years of growing up alongside their brother they used to refer to him simply as a “Legend” for the inspiration and positivity he spread to them and everyone else he would meet.Pauline says that’s what Calums life was all about – smiling, inspiring others and enjoying the small things in life like sitting in the garden taking in the sights and sounds of nature or hanging out with his friends for coffee. He left everyone feeling better for time in his company and he motivated and inspired many people by his selfless attitude that never saw him complain or see the negative in anyone or anything.A trait that his family say was rooted in his deep faith and love of life.“He was very wise and he would always say thing to us like, ‘Sure it could be worse’ or he would say things ‘Look at nature. Look at the birds. Everyday is a good day.’“The funny thing was that within the family we never treated Calum like he was sick because he went everywhere with us, on holiday, or to the cinema, for meals. There was never a problem with him always brought happiness and he brought us a lot of luck. Even in the way he would meet people, he just attracted people to him.We enjoyed everyday of life with Calum.” – Pauline“We enjoyed everyday of life with Calum. There was always lots of laughter. He was great craic. I remember once at Christmas time get got his presents of some new Arsenal tops and a new radio and he said ‘Now I’m in my element’. He had so many quirky little sayings. Yet, he never demanded anything or complained about the pain he was in. He never moaned about it. He smiled, he laughed and nobody with him would no there was even anything wrong”.He returned to school and he participated fully in all family events as well as annual trips to see his favourite rugby stars in action in the Heineken Cup finals.Calum with Johnny Sexton.“He was always smiling and he was a great inspiration to us and our other kids. He never complained or gave out. He was amazing. He would say ‘if you have a goal just go for it’”, Eddie says.By age 15 however, the tumour had returned once again and forced him into a position where he had to receive more surgery and hospitalisation and it appeared that against all their best efforts there as little more that could be done to help him at this point.Then, as a last ditch effort, one doctor said the only remaining hope would be to try radium treatment but it may be too late to help.Pauline said: “It was Christmas 2008 and we were told there was no hope and the doctors gave us two weeks. But once they started the radium you could see it was having an effect and it was taking the pressure away from his head. He did really well and after four months they told us that in the doctor’s experience that they felt he had between four months to a year left.”His amazing recovery continued and this episode saw the Nugent family resolve to make the most of whatever time they had left with Calum and to live each day to the maximum.This new attitude set them on a roller coaster ride that saw Calum grow and flourish alongside his family and friends and he continued with his huge passion for sport, art and music and become friends with some of the worlds biggest celebrities along the way.Pauline said “In early 2009 we went ‘Right, that’s it’. Calum just improved and we lived life to the fullest from there on”.A budding DJ with a huge passion for music saw Calum get to meet some of his music idols including U2 stars Bono and The Edge.The U2 guitarist spent time with Calum and his parents right before he was due to walk out on stage to play for a sell-out crowd in Croke Park.Calum with The Edge from U2.On another occasion, at a party hosted by music promoter Denis Desmond, U2’s frontman Bono, having heard Calum was a fan, casually walked over and put his arm around him and said “I’m an aging rock star looking for some love and attention from my number one fan”. He then sat down and enjoyed spending time with the Letterkenny lad and signing a poster for him with the message “God is great and so are you”.“We couldn’t believe it. It was his hero. Calum seems to make wishes come true for everyone. Maybe in some way he may have done it for us. But had a huge interest in all music from classical right through to heavy metal. He just had a great understanding of music,” Eddie says.Calum and BonoAs the months passed Calum also got to meet and befriend Today FM Stars Ian Dempsey and Mario Rosenstock, rugby stars including Johnny Sexton, Rob Kearney and Sean O’Brien, movie actor Jonathan Rhys Meyers and many more. All of whom took a genuine interest in Calum, his positivity and his well-being, Eddie says.He just drew people to him wherever he went and made time for everyone” – EddieCalum with rugby star Rob Kearney.The family pictured with actor Jonathan Rhys Meyers.As time moved on, gradually the illness impacted more and more and while his family knew that his health was in decline, his spirit was as unbreakable as ever.Nothing would prove this more than in the last weeks of his life while receiving care in the Donegal Hospice.Eddie says that he and his son were big rugby fans and each year they enjoyed going on their ‘men only’ rugby trips to the European Championship Cup finals, but by this stage it looked like they may have gone to their last game together.While they had plans to attend the 2018 finals in North Spain between Leinster and French club Racing 92, while in the hospice Calum slipped into a coma but miraculously, he re-emerged from this unscathed and confidently proclaimed to his family that they would make it to Bilbao and they would see their heroes take to the field once again.While it seemed impossible initially that they could make the trip to Spain, with the right help and support from their friends they self-discharged from the hospice and managed to bring all the required medication and equipment needed for Calum and off they jetted to the Basque city.Calum in BilbaoDuring the journey Calum maintained his trademark smile, upbeat humour and positive vibes throughout. His inspirational journey was matched by the heroics on the field of play as they got to watch Leinster claim a historic victory in the final creating special memories of one of the best trips they had ever undertaken.On their return he re-entered the hospice and a short time later, once again, he slipped into a coma. But, in the true fighting spirit he showed throughout his life he amazed everyone once again to re-emerge one last time.During his life his siblings coined a new nickname for their hero brother – Lazarus – for the way Calum had come back from the brink so many times in his life and once again his spirit was not diminished.Pauline feels that this was his special way of preparing for his final journey and saying a final farewell to the family he loved so dearly before he peacefully passed away on May 19, 2018. He was 25 years old.Remembering Calum, Pauline says: “He left his mark on so many people and he was the happiest person I have ever known. Calum had an infectious smile, gave unconditional love and never judged. He had a great sense of humour and was known as a legend by his siblings.”Against all odds he never gave up” – PaulineAs in his life, Calum continues to inspire in his passing and his life has been the motivation for a special charity night planned by his family that will feature two of his well-known friends radio and television stars Ian Dempsey and Gift Grub’s Mario Rosenstock who are coming to host a special charity night in the Clanree Hotel on Friday May 3rd.Calum pictured with his friends Ian Dempsey and Mario Rosenstock whowill perform a special show in his honour in Letterkenny on May 3rd.It promises to be a special night with lots of memories, laughs, prizes and a few surprises with all the proceeds going to Donegal Hospice and Friends of Letterkenny University Hospital for new medical equipment.Speaking on his popular breakfast show on Today FM recently Ian said “A friend of ours, Calum Nugent is his name, unfortunately he passed away at a very young age of 25 last year and myself and Mario became good friends with him and he used to come to all the stage shows and also used to come and visit us here in Marconi House.“Well, we were asked to put on a show so we are doing a very special show with myself and Mario, in memory of Calum, in the Clanree Hotel in Letterkenny on Friday May 3rd, 2019 and starting at 8pm and it is only 20 quid to get in and we are all doing this for nothing with the money going to the Donegal Hospice and the Friends of Letterkenny University Hospital because they gave him such great care when he was, unfortunately, near the end of his life.”He said on the night people can expect lots of laughs, lots of fun and lots of interaction and all for two very worthy causes. There is also a host of great prizes to be won on the night.You can get tickets directly from The Clanree Hotel, at The Donegal Hospice and through the Friends of Letterkenny University Hospital priced €20.Remembering Calum: A shining star who touched many lives was last modified: May 1st, 2019 by Staff WriterShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Tuesday’s QPR quiz

first_imgHow much do you know about QPR defender Jose Bosingwa? See how many of these five questions you can answer correctly.[wp-simple-survey-38]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 Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

NH Giants claim district tourney

first_imgThe Northern Humboldt Giants clinched their second straight district championship at the Arcata Babe Ruth Field on Friday, defeating the No. 1 seed Humboldt Eagles 3-0 in the championship game.After losing all four regular-season games between the two clubs, the Giants knocked off their biggest rivals twice in three matchups at the postseason tourney.Both wins were shutouts, and the Giants gave up just one unearned run in the three games.On Friday, that stellar pitching and defense was on …last_img read more

Ohio Ag Weather and Forecast September 12, 2019

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest No significant change in the forecast this morning. We continue to be very warm with temps above normal. This will continue into tomorrow before a cold front moves through. We have moisture  chances the next two days. Today its just heat based instability, and the best rain potential through most of the day stays to the north. Tomorrow, our moisture develops with a frontal boundary that finally passes through. Here are the forecast details.Today will be partly to mostly sunny and warm. Temps above normal in all ares. While we cant rule out a couple of showers, generally, the daytime hours will see the action farther north over Lake Erie and up into Ontario. Then late this afternoon and this evening, we can see some moisture over the northern third of the state, particularly NE Ohio, but even that has very spotty coverage and low totals.Tomorrow we are very warm again, as our cold front holds off until late afternoon and evening before passing through. So, sun starts the day , with clouds increasing in the afternoon. Rains from late afternoon through the overnight night will range from .1″-8″ with coverage at 75% of the state. However, it will take some stronger thunderstorms tonight to get to the upper end of the range, and that will likely be limited to northeast parts of the state, but not completely confined there. Everything is done by mid morning Saturday.We turn out partly sunny and cooler behind the front for Saturday, then stay dry with sunny to partly cloudy skies from Sunday through most of next week. The only hiccup may end up being net Friday, where we can pick up a couple of widely scattered showers, but even then, the coverage will be 30% of the state or less. Temps will climb some, and will spend most of next week near to slightly above normal, but will not be anywhere near what we are currently experiencing.10 day rain potentialIn the extended period, we have rains from next Saturday night through Sunday that can bring .25″-1″ with 80% coverage. Then another system around Wednesday the 25th triggers up to an additional half inch. Otherwise, we are dry. The extended period turns significantly cooler behind the system that passes the 21st and 22nd. Temps will be below normal, and we can see several pushes to the low 40s for lows in that time frame. It is clear that this warmer pattern is not going to hold for the long haul.last_img read more

11W Pays Homage To Ezekiel Elliott With An “85 Yards Through The Heart Of The South” T-Shirt

first_imgEzekiel Elliott running the ball for Ohio State.GLENDALE, AZ – JANUARY 01: Running back Ezekiel Elliott #15 of the Ohio State Buckeyes runs up field during the first half of the BattleFrog Fiesta Bowl against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish at University of Phoenix Stadium on January 1, 2016 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images)Back on January 1, the Ohio State Buckeyes shocked the college football world when they knocked off the No. 1-seeded Alabama Crimson Tide in the Sugar Bowl. Buckeyes running back Ezekiel Elliott ran all over Alabama, racking up 230 yards on just 20 carries. His most important run came late in the fourth quarter, as he broke off an 85-yard score with his team ahead by less than a touchdown.The guys over at Eleven Warriors have put together an incredible tee shirt to commemorate the play. It’s titled “85 Yards Through The Heart Of The South”, and it features a graphic of the play diagram. Check it out:Here’s a clip of the play, if you haven’t seen it before. Ohio State fans certainly have.You can pick one up here. We imagine that there won’t be too many orders coming from the Yellowhammer state.last_img read more

Minnesota’s QB Says Michigan State Has Big Ten’s Worst Visiting Locker Room

first_imgMichigan State's Spartan Stadium during the spring game.InstagramGoing on the road in the Big Ten is never a treat – between the travel, the team’s opposing fans and the shoddy facilities. But according to Minnesota quarterback Mitch Leidner, one program’s visiting locker room situation is worse than the rest.Leidner was asked which program has the worst locker room in the Big Ten, and his answer was Michigan State. He claims the stalls don’t have doors. Andy Greder of the St. Paul Pioneer Press captured the quote.#Gophers QB Mitch Leidner was asked today about worst #B1G visiting locker room. Michigan State, he said. Reason: no doors on toilet stalls.— Andy Greder (@andygreder) July 26, 2016It’s hard to disagree with Leidner, if what he’s saying is true.Luckily for Leidner, he won’t have to deal with the situation again. He’s a senior, and Minnesota doesn’t play Michigan State in 2016.last_img read more

Defence lawyers error prompts Appeal Court to quash sexassault conviction

first_imgTORONTO – A man found guilty for the violent sexual assault of a new mother has had his conviction quashed after Ontario’s top court on Monday agreed his lawyer had failed him at trial.In deciding a miscarriage of justice had occurred, the Court of Appeal said Ian Walendzewicz might have succeeded in undermining the complainant’s credibility if he had an effective lawyer — normally a difficult argument for an accused to make.Superior Court Justice Jane Ferguson, sitting without a jury, convicted Walendzewicz, of Cobourg, Ont., in February 2013 — a decade after the alleged attack. Evidence at trial, based on the complainant’s testimony, was that the man with whom she had an on and off relationship arrived drunk at her apartment on a night in October 2003.The woman alleged Walendzewicz punched her in the face and broke her nose, threatened to pour hot soup on her and her three-week-old baby, then raped her, court records show. She reported the alleged incident to police and went to hospital, where she completed a sexual assault questionnaire.One of the answers she gave on the form — entered into evidence by the prosecution with agreement from the defence — was that she’d had protected sex just two days before the alleged attack — an answer Walendzewicz’s lawyer failed to notice.Walendzewicz’s defence — he did not testify — turned on his argument that the woman had agreed to sex with him, but during her trial testimony, she was adamant she would never have done so that soon after giving birth.“Three weeks after having a baby you are not having sex,” the woman testified, according to a transcript. “You are supposed to be waiting at least six weeks. And trust me, the last thing on your mind after giving natural childbirth is sex.”Justice Ferguson accepted her testimony as truthful, and convicted the accused, then in his mid-30s, of sexual assault, assault causing bodily harm, and uttering threats.Walendzewicz’s appeal turned on the complainant’s answer on the hospital questionnaire.Because he had failed to notice her prior statement, Walendzewicz’s lawyer did not bring an application to cross-examine the woman on the answer, which might have exposed an apparent contradiction about her unwillingness to have sex.The lawyer did belatedly try to reference the questionnaire in closing arguments, but Ferguson ruled that out of bounds because he had failed to raise it earlier.For its part, the prosecution argued on appeal that the questionnaire did not prove the woman had agreed to sex two days before the alleged assault. The Crown asserted that cross-examining her about the questionnaire would only have elicited more evidence of his abuse of the woman.The Appeal Court rejected the prosecution arguments.“The complainant sought to corroborate her position she did not consent by offering the testimony (she gave),” the Appeal Court said. “This testimony while on the witness stand at trial was central to her credibility, which was the only live issue at trial.”The mere fact his defence made no attempt to try to undermine her credibility by challenging her over the questionnaire, the court said, was enough to show Walendzewicz had ineffective trial counsel.“We are satisfied that the appellant received ineffective representation at trial that undermines the reliability of the verdict and resulted in a miscarriage of justice,” the Appeal Court said.last_img read more

Federal Court gives green light to residential dayschool students class action lawsuit

first_imgAPTN National NewsThe Tk’emlups te Secwépemc and Shishalh Indian Bands have been given the green light by the Federal Court to proceed with a class action lawsuit on behalf of former Indian residential school day students.Day-school students were not included in the Indian residential school settlement agreement.Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc Chief Shane Gottfriedson speaks to APTN about the legal victory.last_img