Over €55k raised in one day for former Dundalk and Louth star in need of cancer treatment

Sonia Hoey’s family are hoping to raise €80,000 for treatment in Mexico.

Sonia Hoey celebrates after the 2005 FAI Cup final - in which she scored the winner.
Sonia Hoey celebrates after the 2005 FAI Cup final - in which she scored the winner.
Image: Lorraine O'Sullivan/INPHO

A GOFUNDME PAGE has been set up to raise money for former Dundalk City Women’s FAI Cup winner and Louth ladies footballer, Sonia Hoey, who is need of “life-changing” cancer treatment.

Over €55,000 of an €80,000 goal has been raised in the day since the ‘Save Our Sonia (SOS) – Treatment in Mexico’ fundraising appeal began, with 1,637 people having donated at the time of writing.

Dundalk FC and Louth LGFA are among the many sporting organisations sharing the GoFundMe page.

An all-rounder, 42-year-old Hoey is well known locally in Dundalk and further afield for her glittering sporting achievements. As well as with the Lilywhites, she enjoyed spells with Castletown Celtic (Belles — she recently became the first player to take her place in the club’s Hall of Fame), Peamount United and Rock Celtic.

During her time at Oriel Park, Sonic scored the only goal of the game in the 2005 Women’s FAI Cup final against Peamount United at Lansdowne Road, bringing the trophy back to the town for the first, and only, time.

Hoey was also a talented Gaelic footballer, representing — and captaining — DkIT, Dowdallshill and Louth, while she ran with Redeemer AC too.

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The GoFund Me page, set up by her family, details her battle with illness.

“Sonia was originally diagnosed with stage three cervical cancer in February 2019. She underwent an aggressive treatment of radiation and chemotherapy every day for two months.  She was almost a year in remission when we got the sad news for the second time in July 2020, incurable cervical cancer had returned and this time it has spread to her lungs. 

Because Sonia has received the maximum dose of radiation, she can’t undergo this treatment again, and so all that is being offered to her is palliative care. The tumors are inoperable and incurable. We have been given 12 months to spend with her while she is receiving chemotherapy treatment that leaves her very sick.  

“We are not happy to accept the prognosis of 12 months and we have been researching every type of treatment that is available. The best option that we have found is through the Hope for Cancer clinic in Mexico who will offer nontoxic protocols that will improve her overall condition and help shrink her tumors. While working to raise the money for this life-changing treatment Sonia has been following a strict diet and using alternative treatments to help suppress the cancer for a short period of time. So, this treatment alongside the current treatment would be the best possible chance for Sonia to prolong her life. 

“Anyone who knows Sonia will know what an avid sportsperson she is and will understand how much of a shock this diagnosis has been for the whole family.”

The cost of covering the treatment can total over €80,000 for a three-week programme. 

“As a club,” Dundalk FC wrote in a statement, “we would encourage all of our supporters to make a donation, big or small, to help raise funds for a player, and a person, who means a lot to the history and success of our club and our town in general.”

You can donate here>

About the author:

Emma Duffy

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