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GOD SAVED ME; Injured GAA star thanks Lord as he returns to family.

Byline: JILLY BEATTIE

INJURED GAA star Mark McGovern returned home to Fermanagh and said yesterday: "It was God himself who saved my life".

The Gaelic footballer seriously injured during a game in San Francisco in June said doctors believed he was "95% gone" as he lay in a coma.

Mark and his family spent 18 days travelling the 5,000 miles home by boat, train and car.

He said: "I have always been a religious person, I bless myself on several occasions. It was God himself who saved my life.

"The doctor said I was 95% dead. If I had just survived it, that would have been fair enough, but to come out with no major problems and be able to walk and talk is just amazing.

"It was obviously God himself up above that did something." Mark, 23, praised his parents Danny and Josie and sisters Grace, Hanna and Connie as well as the people of Fermanagh for rallying around him and said he felt a little "embarrassed" by the overwhelming level of support throughout the county - and in America.

He added: "I had a doctor who was so brilliant to me. I remember walking down the street afterwards and she stopped me and said, 'You shouldn't even be here'.

"I had so many questions for her, and she helped me so much. The nurses who looked after me were so kind and helpful".

He has also paid a loving tribute to long-term girlfriend Jessica who was by his hospital bed every day and to whom he spoke for the first time when he woke up from his coma.

Mark revealed: "She was with me every day, every step of the way. She has been brilliant. I don't know where I would be without her."

It is alleged a player assaulted Mark during the fateful game but it could be months before the FBI have completed their investigation.

But the McGovern family and Mark insist their priority right now is looking forward to the future here at home.

CAPTION(S):

HOME AT LAST nMark McGovern with sisters Helen, left, Grace and Connie yesterday PLAYER 3Mark in GAA action
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Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Nov 4, 2011
Words:359
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