Local man TJ Duffy remains in hospital tonight in a critical but stable condition after undergoing emergency brain surgery over the weekend.
The 21-year-old underwent the procedure at Beaumont Hospital at the weekend, with family – including twin brother Emmett – holding a bedside vigil for the popular 21-year-old. Doctors at Beaumont are positive that the surgery went well, after post-operation tests came back good.
The Ardee man suffered serious head injuries in an altercation which took place shortly before 4am on Saturday morning on Main Street in Carrickmacross. TJ had been enjoying a night out when he became involved in a row. It is believed it was trying to intervene in a scuffle involving a friend when he was knocked to the ground outside the Paddy Power bookmakers.
He suffered severe head injuries and after being found unconscious, Gardai and ambulance services were called.
After being taken to Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital initially, Ardee man TJ was transferred to Beamont in Dublin where he underwent the surgery on a clot on his brain.
The prime suspect in the incident is a man in his 20s who fled the area on foot through an alleyway. Sources say the suspect is from outside Carrickmacross and local Gardaí are expected to make an arrest. It is understood he knew the victim through friends.
TJ is a Dundalk IT student, apprentice electrician and a keen GAA player, lining out for Sean McDermotts GFC senior team for the last number of years. He has come through the ranks with the Seans, playing juvenile football at various age groups before breaking into the senior side.
The Seans match against Naomh Malachi scheduled for Sunday was postponed after the attack. TJ also played GAA for Ardee Community School, helping his school win a Lennon Cup in 2013.
Social media has been awash with messages of support for TJ over the last number of days. ‘Stay strong TJ, we are all thinking of you’, one well-wisher wrote. Another said, ‘A sound young man . Thoughts and prayers with you TJ’.