‘Kind’ and ‘considerate’ Matt to be laid to rest
Leeside is in mourning today, Thursday, as “gentleman” Matthew Healy is laid to rest after being attacked and killed in a Cork city hospital ward.
A requiem mass will be held for Mr Healy at 12pm in St Mary’s Church in his home village of Berrings, followed by a private funeral. The retired farmer leaves behind sons Vincent and Gerard and daughter Claire, daughters-in-law Olga and Dolores, son-in-law Kieran, grandchildren Séan, James, Robert, Matthew, Clíona, Ailbhe, Annabel and Laoise, and sisters Patty, Sheila and Nora.
On 22 January, Mr Healy, 89, died after he was assaulted by a fellow patient at a general ward at Mercy University Hospital (MUH) in Cork city shortly after 5.30am.
Speaking to the Cork Independent Fianna Fáil’s Cllr Michael Looney, who was a friend and neighbour of Mr Healy, said today will be a very sad day the parish and for Cork.
Cllr Looney said: “If there was ever a gentleman, he was a gentleman in every respect – kind, considerate.”
“When you look at his photograph you would know straight away that there was no malice in him. I knew Matt very, very well. He was a neighbour for 40 years.”
Mr Looney, who will perform in the choir at today’s requiem mass, said the close knit community of Berrings and the parish of Inniscarra are still in shock regarding the brutal circumstances of Mr Healy’s death.
He said: “They're dumbfounded at the moment and they’re trying to come to terms with the whole situation because, of all places, if you're inside in a hospital they're trying to keep you alive. You certainly wouldn't think that you'd be murdered inside in your own bed. You couldn't imagine it ever happening to be quite honest.
“It's frightening to talk about it, and then of course poor Matthew only buried his wife almost 3 weeks ago.”
A man in his 30s who was staying in the same ward as Mr Healy was arrested at the scene of the fatal assault on Sunday morning and later charged. He appeared before Cork District Court on Tuesday.
In a statement, MUH expressed its sympathy to Mr Healy’s loved ones.
It read: “Management and staff at Mercy University Hospital, Cork are saddened and shocked at the tragic and unexpected death of an elderly patient in an incident at the hospital today and express their deepest condolences to the family, relatives and friends. May he rest in peace.”
Following the assault, the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) called for a full security audit for hospitals across the country.
INMO General Secretary Phil Ní Sheaghdha said: “In light of this awful incident, the INMO is once again repeating our call for a full review and audit of security systems and protocols in Irish hospitals. We haven’t had a security audit of our hospitals since 2016, it is time now for the HSE to complete a full audit of what measures are in place in each hospital.”