- Current Team
- Ireland – Sport Parkinson’s Four Nations Golf 2021
Hello—my name is Gerry O’Connor and I am delighted to be playing for Team Ireland in the upcoming Golf tournament at the Belfry. I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s 13 years ago at the age of 48. Married to Anne for 38 years with 4 children ranging in age from 36 to 27 with 2 working in London and 2 working in Dublin and thankfully all happy and healthy.
I worked for Allied Irish Bank in the Treasury area for 33 years starting in Dublin in Oct 1979 and moving to London in May 1987. I retired on ill health in October 2012. In my younger days I was a keen sportsman playing Rugby, Gaelic Football and Golf. I continue to support London Irish and my home county (Kildare) for Gaelic Football. My home golf club is Worplesdon GC in Surrey and my love of links golf is evident as a Country member in Saunton GC in North Devon. My love of sport has helped me maintain a fitness regime that proved to be an invaluable help in managing my Parkinson’s. Exercise programs have been developed which focus on big movements carried out with real purpose behind every move with regular participation a must in order to get maximum benefit from the effort.
I am a keen golfer and have always enjoyed hitting golf balls, playing in competitions with friends and family. Based on my experience the social aspects that golf provides is a crucial benefit for the mental health of the Parkinson’s patient. While my golf game has deteriorated as the PD symptoms increased I remain as determined as ever to keep playing and have set a personal objective to see a downward move, by year end, in my current WHS index of 19.7 and would be delighted if it happened at the Belfry.
Through the combined efforts of Cure Parkinson’s Trust and Sport Parkinson’s there is a momentum behind the Home Nations Golf Tournament which is planned to support significant fund raising while allowing for developing friendships of participants which will endure over time. I look forward to the tournament and the new friendships I will make and am grateful for the opportunity to participate.