Talker Benny keeps it zipped to raise money for MND

HOSPITAL porter, Benny Cassidy, put a zip on it and kept quiet to raise close to £2000 for the Motor Neurone Disease Association.

Cassidy, 64, who is from Enniskillen and works at the South West Acute Hospital (SWAH), held his peace for 24 hours last weekend with the combined total raised coming in at £1939.63.

Benny has been known to do his bit for good causes in the past – last year he walked an incredible 600,000 steps to raise £6000 for a cancer charity.


But given how friends and family claim that he “never stops talking”, his efforts 12 months ago were a stroll in the park compared to keeping quiet for a day.

“This was more challenging as I’m a bit of a talker ,” said Benny. “I can’t say it was easy to remain totally silent for 24 hours

“I know people who have died from Motor Neurone Disease (MND) and I saw the way it left them before they died. It’s for that reason that I did this.

“It gave me a wee insight – just even for a day – to see how a loss of speech affects those who have MND.

“The Motor Neurone Disease Association (MNDA) is a charity which doesn’t get much funding at all from the government so this is a bid to get much-needed funds for them.

“I had to take the day off work as well because I work in a hospital and communication is key in there.

“The family was looking forward to me being silent as it’s not often that I go quiet for a while. We had the grandchildren in the house and they’re very young so you can imagine how it was not being able to talk back to them.


“My wife did actually talk about getting me a gag. She had faith in me but not that much faith.

“I didn’t stub my toe on something that might have made me lose the challenge. I could have made noises had anything like that happened but as long as I didn’t say a word, the challenge was still on.

“People have been very good and very generous – there’s so many fundraisers going on at the minute at a time when people don’t have the money. But the response means that this is so close to so many people.”

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