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Mad Pride Founder Dies at 61

 

John McCarthy, founder of the mental health awareness group Mad Pride Ireland, has died aged 61 following a two year battle with motor neurone disease. He passed away at his home in Montenotte in Cork city yesterday morning.

McCarthy was a convivial and outspoken advocate who pushed for the “normality of madness” and open discussions on psychological health.

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin led tributes to the inspirational McCarthy, saying he had he had helped to change how people view mental illness. He said, “He handled his own diagnosis with motor neurone disease with dignity and bravery, and continued his work on behalf of those living with mental illness.”

On 29 December, McCarthy spoke of his illness in his Cork Independent column. With characteristic wit, he wrote, “My health, like the economy, is going to shite, but my spirit is growing.” He added, “‘Mental illness’ is not about lack of resources, it is about an ethos based on the right to force a cure, on victims, who are patients. I will fight that abusive ethos as long as I have a breath in me.”

He is survived by his wife Liz, children David and Jill, and grandchildren. A humanist ceremony marking his life will take place at midday in Cork city tomorrow, followed by his burial at Curraghkippane cemetery.

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    • kenyatta2009
    • January 11th, 2012

    Reblogged this on A Little Local Color.

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