Our Story Prompts Wonderful Gesture

Pictured is Aer Lingus pilot, Captain Conor Keeling presenting Michael Leahy with his 50 year old model aeroplane at Prosper Fingal, North Street, SwordsPictured is Aer Lingus pilot, Captain Conor Keeling presenting Michael Leahy with his 50 year old model aeroplane at Prosper Fingal, North Street, Swords

The County Leader, your number 1 local newspaper has played a prominent role in a wonderful gesture by a Malahide based pilot last week.
In our edition of 3rd March, we ran a story about a Malahide man, Michael Leahy, who was recently recognised as Ireland’s best ‘Public Transport Ambassador’ Twenty-eight year old Michael, who attends Prosper Fingal Day Service in Swords, an umbrella group for people with intellectual disabilities, was chosen to be Ireland’s best ‘Public Transport Ambassador’ by the National Transport Authority (NTA). A room in his home has been converted to accommodate his impressive collection of model trains, buses and aeroplanes.
It was then that fellow Malahide man and Aer Lingus pilot, Captain Conor Keeling entered the picture. He had a surprise in store, when he was presented Michael with a 50 year old model aircraft, which had never been opened until now. It had never been put together and was still in its original box. It was presented to him by his father, Bill Keeling, who comes from a well-known Balbriggan family.
Conor said, “When I read the article about Michael in the County Leader, I knew then that I had found a new home for my model aeroplane. I was very impressed with the work that Michael has done as National Transport Ambassador, and I knew then that I had found a new home for the aeroplane. My father bought it for me when I was about six years old and it ‘s now about
50 years old, the same age as me,”
said Conor.
I wasn’t sure how to go about putting it together, and I thought it would be good to give it to Michael, as he would know all about that and provide it with a good home. It’s a Fokker Friendship model plane and Aer Lingus was the first airline in the world to use these planes.”
I decided to ring Kate Madden here
in Prosper Fingal on North Street in Swords and she was delighted, as am I that it has now found a good home,” said Conor.
Michael was thrilled to receive such a wonderful gift and he invited fellow Malahide man, Conor over to his home to see his collection, an invitation which was gladly accepted.