Tom Murray is Ireland’s No. 1 Pharmacist
The staff at Tom Murray’s Pharmacies in Ramelton and Castlefinn are celebrating this week after his patients selected him as Pharmacist of the Year in a promotion sponsored by Helix Health.
The awards ceremony took place on Saturday night with an introductory speech by John Bowman at the Mansion House in Dublin.
And Tom Murray’s motto of service to all - ‘Whether Prince or Pauper’ - was commended. The panel of 12 judges had a large number of nominations but said Tom stood out above the rest.
Tom along with his wife, Roisin are the proprietors of pharmacies: he took over the Ramelton business some 12 years ago from Paul O’Donnell and has been in Castlefinn for eight years.
Originally from Coventry, Tom trained in Manchester, before completing an MA in Community Pharmacy at Queen’s University, Belfast and going on to buy the pharmacy in Ramelton 12 years ago.
And in a second prestigious award on the night, Brenda Treacy of Cara Pharmacy in Bundoran took home the ‘Young Pharmacist of the Year’ Award.
Tom has returned thanks to Julie Jordan and his other nominators along with his customers whose loyalty and support have made it all possible. And he has had great praise for his staff who have contributed to the Murray’s Pharmacy tradition of going that extra mile and to do whatever is needed for the wellbeing of the patients.
While this is an individual award, Tom said that he sees it as an award for everyone involved in the business and it reflects well on their work, team effort and looking after those who come through their doors. He’s also paid tribute to his wife, Roisin and four children Aoibhinn (14) Odhran (11) Niall (10) and Fionnan (8).
Now in their ninth year, the Helix Health Pharmacist Awards are aimed at raising money for the Pharmacy Benevolent Fund and ‘celebrating excellence’ across all disciplines of the pharmacy profession.
Jennifer Hughes, Marketing Manager with Helix Health, spoke at the awards ceremony and congratulated the two Donegal winners.
“We’re delighted to be involved with the Pharmacist Awards again this year and hope the event will raise plenty of much-needed funds for the Pharmacy Benevolent Fund,” she said.
“Pharmacists play a pivotal role in communities, hospitals, universities and regulatory bodies around Ireland. These Awards celebrate that fact, and provide pharmacists with an important networking opportunity and an enjoyable social occasion each year.
“On behalf of Helix Health, I would like to congratulate Tom and Brenda on their wonderful achievements. By all accounts, both have made valuable contributions to their communities, with Tom being described by his patients as ‘a gem in the community of Ramelton’, while Brenda was the driving force behind a healthy heart week at her pharmacy in Bundoran.”
In her letter of commendation for Tom Murray, Julie Jordan wrote: “I would like to nominate Tom Murray for an award because as a Community Pharmacist, he always goes above and beyond the call of duty. Tom always, no matter what the time or the day, always has time to listen to your concerns, answer your questions and offers professional advice. The wonderful thing about Tom and indeed his staff at Murray’s Pharmacy is that they know us, their customers, on a very personal level which makes any visit to the Pharmacy a very personal and person centred visit.
Tom, for my family and I has given us more helpful reassurance and comfort through the years than he will ever know. Tom was on hand when needed to guide us through the cancer diagnosis, treatment and death of two very close family members. He has a very calm, unassuming nature and has a way of answering questions he knows you would like answers to but haven’t built yourself up to asking. This is an extremely precious quality in Tom.
Tom is always my first thought when I need guidance on some medical problem or need to know some further information about a particular product. Tom, in knowing me personally is well aware that I very much like to have all the information that is available to me about whichever particular illness or product we are dealing with. Each time I collect a prescription, I have no need to ask, Tom naturally comes and explains all that’s needed.
An example of Tom’s dedication to his customers is quite recently I had emailed him asking to speak privately about a particular issue. Unknown to me, Tom was on a well deserved family holiday but yet still without thought was willing to give up his time to help in anyway he could.
Another example of Tom’s dedication, the support available to his customers and his interest in his patients is quite a personal story to me, but one I will share to an extent as I feel Tom deserves the upmost recognition for the role he plays within all our family lives. As Tom and his staff know their customers so well, Tom as been a great support and a fountain of knowledge for me personally since I have been ill. Due to the community nature of the Pharmacy and Tom’s dedication to his work, he knows and understands the traumas I have been through in the past number of years and as a result has been able not only to advise me professionally on all the questions I have had about medications but has more importantly been able to recognise my lack of acceptance of my need for treatment and rest. This is something Tom did not need to bother himself with but it is apparent everyday in Murray’s Pharmacy that you are much more than just “another” customer walking in the door. You are a valued person to Tom and the staff.
Words just don’t do justice to the part Tom plays in our community and for me, personally I will always be indebted to Tom for his compassion, understanding, openness and for the fountain of information - that is Tom Murray.
I hope this nomination will in some way show Tom and his wonderful team what they mean to us as a Community here in Ramelton but also the role they play in our lives personally. Sometimes we are all guilty of expecting the services that are on offer but never take the time to say Thank You.
To Tom and all the staff at Murray’s Pharmacy - thank you most sincerely for the smiles that greet us, the laughter we share, your unfailing helpfulness and your invaluable knowledge. Within Murray’s Pharmacy, we are all friends.”
Care of the Aged News
The Ramelton Care of the Aged are having a fun bingo on Thursday 28th November at 7.30pm in the Robertson Hall. All welcome and refreshments will be served.
The Ramelton Care of the Aged Christmas party will be on Monday 16th December in the Silver Tassie at 8pm. Bus leaving Robertson hall at 7.30pm sharp. to book and more information please contact Chris 074 9151799 or Patricia 0749152690.
Busy season at Ramelton Town Hall
The town hall Christmas season is promising to be a very busy one and the Colmcille Gospel Choir will stage the concert there on Thursday December 19th. Details to be published later. The proceeds will be divided between the fundraising campaigns at St. Mary’s and St. Paul’s and you are asked to note the date.
Meanwhile the children at St. Mary’s national school will stage their show in the Town Hall on Wednesday December 16th.
Panto Season begins
This week the pantomime society is choosing its production for 2014 and once again it promises to be a very busy and exciting time right through Christmas.
It is the 51st season for the group and it is hoped to stage the show in February. As always new faces and new ideas and new members would be most welcome and we will keep you informed when the rehearsals begin.
At the same time the Ramelton Panto Book with wonderful memories, photos and memories will make a great Christmas gift. The book produced as part of the 50th anniversary celebrations is currently on sale priced at €10.
As well the Country Market continues their Saturday morning sales in the hall and the details of their Christmas Fayre will be in the Tribune in the coming weeks.
St. Paul’s Church Family would like to thank all who supported their Annual Bazaar Part 1 and 2 in any way. The results of draws on the night were HAMPER - Francesca Peoples, Sweets - Alan Gillispie, PAINTING - Rose Bryant, FIREMAN SAM - Lauren Mc Dermott, TURKEY and GAMMON - Leigha Fisher, CAKE - Rose Bryant.
Ramelton Country Market will be beside Greene’s Shoe Shop, Market Square Letterkenny this friday from 10.30am - 2.30pm. Christmas cakes and puddings now available along with our usual homebakes, ready meals and crafts.
Christmas Craft Fayre Ramelton Town Hall saturday 30th November from 11.00am - 5pm. Ramelton Country Market will be there along with many other local craft makers. Tea room open all day so you can relax, enjoy and treat yourself or someone special to the best of homebakes, cooking and crafts in a warm, friendly, festive atmosphere. A lovely day for all. Santa will be popping in. Ring 087 9699715 before 10am to order food for collection during market. We look forward to seeing you.
The Ramelton St. Vincent De Paul will hold their annual collection at Masses in St. Mary’s Church on the weekend 7th and 8th December. Your support would be greatly appreciated.
On Sunday December 1st an U 16 Tennis Tournament will be held at Ramelton Tennis Club. This girls and boys singles event will start at 1pm. Entry fee is €5.00. Entries to Mary at 087 9773957 by 6pm an Saturday 30th November.
Ramelton Community Centre
The following exercise classes are on-going in the community centre.
MONDAY - Toning class 7-8pm , €5;
TUESDAY - Circuits 8-9pm, €5 ;
WEDNESDAY - Jiving 8-10pm, €5;
THURSDAY - Dance Yourself Fit 8:15 - 9:15pm , €5;
FRIDAY - Indoor Football 8:30 - 9:30pm , €1
Christmas Lights news
The fundraising campaign for this year’s Christmas lights is now well underway. Tickets are currently on sale for a raffle at €2 per line with €100 hamper the top prize, €50 voucher for 2nd, €25 voucher for 3rd and a leg of lamb for 4th. A local lady has kindly sponsored a magnificent cross stitch tapestry for the draw on the night. It will be on display in the local shops over the coming weeks. Lines are on sale for €3 per line and it will be drawn on the night of the lights switch on the 8th of December.
The installation of the lights has now commenced and a full turnout of volunteers is needed to ensure that everything is in place for the big switch on Sunday December the 8th at 8pm.
The Immanuel Christian Retreat Centre at Orchard House, Aughnish, Ramelton will host their Dinner with Friends with Christmas Menu on Friday 29th November from 7.30 for 8.00pm.Bring your own wine and booking is essential, so please contact Sue or Harry on Tel 9152534 or email email@example.com
EVE’S IRISH DANCING
Irish dancing classes continue every Monday evening in Ramelton Town Hall at 5.00 p.m. For more information contact Eve on 0879498432.
Ramelton Jiving Classes continue
The popular Jiving Classes in the Ramelton Community Centre continue every Wednesday evening from 8pm. In addition to beginners jiving, the teachers will also be there to teach advanced jivers in the dance. Everyone is welcome and full details are available from Paul McCahill on 087-1252751.