Top rower turned international cyclist appeals for bone marrow donor

Posted on: December 1st, 2014

Having been fighting a form of cancer for the past three years and moved onto his fourth course of chemotherapy in a bid to halt the disease’s progress, former international rower turned international cyclist Paul Giblin is appealing for bone marrow donors to come forward.



By Brian Canty

A top Irish rower and former cyclist has launched a plea for a suitable bone marrow or stem cell donor to cure a particularly aggressive form of cancer known as refractory Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.

Paul Giblin rowed in some of the biggest races in the world including the World Championships.

He then turned to cycling, completing the An Post Rás in 2010 and spending time as a pilot on the Irish paracycling team.

He rode the World Paracycling Championships in Manchester in 2009 but is currently undergoing his fourth bout of chemotherapy.

The latest round of treatment comes after Giblin has fought cancer for three years.

“I don’t want people to be under the impression that it’s just me they are signing up for with this online appeal,” Giblin told stickybottle.

“It’s an anonymous donation to a worldwide registry and I want to make that clear.”

The Galway man, who had a short but successful career in the colours of the Galway Bay CC, is raising awareness of his condition in the hope a suitable donor can be found.


Giblin briefly rode on the Irish paracycling team, competing in the World Championships in Manchester in 2009 where he was pilot on a tandem with Andrew Fitzgerald.


Giblin’s medical team is currently looking to find a match on the ‘global registry’; the pool from which all donations are drawn.

The chemotherapy treatment he is currently receiving will not cure him; it will just buy him time.

Friends are pulling together to spread awareness with a view to increasing the number of donors in Ireland on the ‘global registry’.

By reaching out to as many people as possible, family and friends are hoping that people will sign up to become bone marrow donors, to give those in this situation a chance.

They are trying to get people to register in the first instance and then get tested before potentially going on to donate.

For more information on the registry or to sign yourself up, click here.

If you are keen to help immediately, why not drop into one of the many blood donor clinics which take place all around the country?

Click here to check the calendar for the next clinic in your area.

A lot of Giblin’s supporters and well-wishers are planning to attend the clinics being organised in The Shamrock Lodge Hotel, Athlone this week – on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.