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David O'Mahoney

David O'Mahoney

From 4 weeks in intensive care with very little chance of survival, to the Paralympic opening ceremony days after brain surgery

David O’Mahoney spent most of his childhood moving between schools with little to no social interaction. Once he had left school his focus was directed towards full time employment so he could provide a better life for himself, but much like school David bounced from job to job always looking for the next step up. Having reached the position of Schemes Supervisor working for Transport for London he decided to follow a childhood dream and join the Armed Forces.

Having thrown himself feet first into the Household Cavalry and completed 14 weeks of initial military training, David found himself in Windsor barracks looking up at a 15+ hands black cavalry horse and staring down the barrel of an intensive 14 week riding course that would test every ounce of his physical and mental strength. Two years later, having escorted Her Majesty on numerous state occasions, David attended a boxing event at the Royal Albert Hall.

In a split second life as he knew it would come to a standstill for a number of weeks. Returning back to the barracks David was struck by a vehicle which left him with a severe traumatic brain injury and was put in an induced coma for 4 weeks. Specialists on numerous occasions asked his family to say their goodbyes as the damage and bleeding to his brain required them to remove the right hand side of his skull. His family were told that if he survived it would be unlikely that he would have a good quality of life. To the surprise of the experts, David woke from his coma and spent the next 9 months without the right side of his skull.

This was the beginning of a journey where he learned how to live with a brain injury and ultimately saw him involved with the opening and closing ceremony of the London 2012 Paralympic Games. Battling denial, depression and suicidal thoughts alongside the impending medical discharge from the Armed Forces. David now wants to help others by sharing his experiences and the tools that have helped him overcome this very difficult moment in his life.

The areas in which David is able to deliver effective talks are;
- Overcoming Adversity
- Wellbeing and Mindfulness
- Sleep Hygiene
- Happiness
- Gratitude
- Conquering Fear
- Efficiency
- Bravery
- Motivation
- Self development
- Morale both individually and within a team

Testimonials from Teachers

"David is an exceptionally thoughtful, articulate, selfless, professional, courageous and immaculately sharp young man who has impressed me and those I have introduced him to at many of my events"

– Emma Willis MBE, Founder of Style for Soldiers

“His clear no nonsense personal account of his experiences will silence most audiences and his rationalisation of the cards he has been dealt will not fail to motivate and inspire others. Following his talk at Vodafone people realised how little they really to complain about”

– Bart Borchardt, Head of Transformation. Vodafone Limited

“David has a natural talent to charm and amuse his audience, whilst still getting a serious message across, a message that remains at the forefront of the mind and gives food for thought. Speaking clearly, warmly, honestly and with humour, engaging his audience giving them an inspirational insight into how life has changed for him since his injury”

– Gilly Norton, Founder of Supporting Wounded Veterans

"David is an engaging speaker with an incredible personal story to tell about overcoming great adversity and using this to move on with his own life and to motivate others to be the best that they can be. The students and staff at St Anne’s were inspired by him and all of us left the room thinking about how we can use his experiences to develop greater resilience and rise to the challenge of whatever life might throw in our way."

– Siobhan Gilling, Headteacher​

Speaker File




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