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Henry Shefflin Recounts Harrowing Story Of Young Son's Lawnmower Accident

Henry Shefflin Recounts Harrowing Story Of Young Son's Lawnmower Accident
By PJ Browne

Henry Shefflin and his wife Deirdre appeared on the Late Late Show on Friday to night. The couple discussed the traumatic accident which their young son Henry suffered in May of last year.

Henry, now seven, lost four of his toes and part of his foot in an incident with a ride-on lawnmower.

The 10-time All-Ireland winner recounted what happend to Ryan Tubridy.

I was cutting the grass. Himself and his sister were playing close to me. This is where I made a mistake, I should have told him 'go away from the machine'.

I was cutting the lawn, they were playing around me; little Henry went to run past me and he tripped. He was so happy running past me, he thought it was great to be passing out the lawnmower.

He just looked back at me to smile as if to say 'look at me, Daddy'. With that he tripped and the machine was on him in the blink of an eye.

This is the vivid memory I have of the accident: him just being so happy, such a smile on his face to such anguish and pain. Just like that, in the blink of a second.


Shefflin's wife Deirdre, who was nine weeks pregnant at the time, immediately rang the emergency services.

I knew by the screams of the girls. And it wasn’t a scream that they’d fallen and cut their knee – they were terrified.

I grabbed the phone and dialled 999, I knew someone had been hurt, I didn’t know if it was Henry, little Henry, Freddie, I didn’t know, but I knew by the wails of the girls.

And then I could see Henry lifting little Henry up and going to the other side of the house.

Within 20 minutes two ambulances arrived and young Henry was eventually airlifted to hospital in Crumlin. While they awaited the arrival of the emergency services, all the young boy could do was apologise for his new shoes being ruined.

He kept apologising for his new shoes being ruined. He had got runners with Minions on them and he kept apologising.

He asked me three times - he was getting paler and paler - he asked me three times, 'Mam, am I going to die?' I kept holding him and saying, 'no you are not going to die. The ambulance is coming, you are going to be fine'.

Shefflin's first thought after the accident occurred was to think 'please let this little boy walk again'.

Fortunately, young Henry is able to walk. His mother describes him as a 'happy chappy'. The loss of his four toes means the seven-year-old requires fillers in both of his shoes.



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