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Ormeau pensioner suffering some nerves ahead of run

Mary to have flaming good time

By Paul Ainsworth

A LOCAL pensioner will be having a flaming good week, as she has been selected to carry the Olympic torch as it makes its journey across the North. Ormeau volunteer worker Mary McCarney was chosen from thousands of worthy applicants to run a stretch of the torch route this Thursday, and will be cheered on by hundreds of well-wishers as she carries the flame in the Co Derry town of Magherafelt.

The 70-year-old retired midwife, who is originally from Co Tyrone, but who has lived in the Ormeau area for over two decades, said she is “honoured” to have been chosen for the iconic role, but admitted to some nerves as the big day approaches. The flame is currently on a tour of Britain and Ireland as it makes its way towards London ahead of the beginning of the opening ceremony of the 2012 games next month.

“My family nominated me as a bearer, but to be honest, I didn’t’ think I’d have a chance of being selected,” she said.

“I received e-mails telling me I’d made the last 1000, then 800, and so on, until I was eventually told I’d be carrying the flame on a 300 metre stretch of Magheraflet. I couldn’t believe it.”

Mother of four Mary, who volunteers at the Ormeau St Vincent De Paul shop, has been involved with the charity for over 30 years, even while working as a busy midwife.

“It’s fantastic to be able to do this on behalf of all the local volunteer team,” she added.

“To be honest I’m a bit nervous as so many eyes will be on me for that stretch, but I’m sure I’ll relax once I get into my stride. I don’t think I’ll be able to run it like some other bearers, but I’ll probably start off with a gentle jog and see how I go from there.”

 

 

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