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Canon Norman Lynas will not be returning to Bermuda

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Canon Norman Lynas with his wife Marie-Claire and pet dog (Photograph supplied)
Canon Norman Lynas while working in Bermuda (File photograph)

A former senior Anglican priest who was paralysed as a result of a fall in July will not be returning to the island.

Norman Lynas, the former Canon Residentiary at the Anglican Cathedral in Hamilton, fell down a set of steps in Bermuda on July 30, and was later airlifted to the Lahey Clinic in Massachusetts.

He remains paralysed from the neck down as a result of a spinal cord injury and has since received treatment in several US hospitals.

The Right Reverend Nicholas Dill, Anglican Bishop of Bermuda, said that Canon Lynas has been made Canon Emeritus in Bermuda, meaning he can still carry out some functions, such as teaching, from overseas.

Bishop Dill said: “He has retired but retains an honorific title. He will have no benefits but he will always be considered a Canon of the cathedral, though not present. In that capacity he participated in our carol service by sending a reading he did from his hospital bed.

“We hope he can regain some measure of strength and can participate in many ways. He is a great teacher – you don’t necessarily have to be able to walk to teach.”

Canon Lynas, previously the Dean of St Canice's Cathedral in Kilkenny, Ireland, is receiving treatment in a Florida hospital for an infectious wound but is due to leave hospital this week.

He will be cared for around the clock by his wife Marie-Claire and will move in with her mother Judy Havas in Sun City, Florida, US.

Ms Lynas told The Royal Gazette: “Unfortunately, there has been little therapeutic progress due to nature of his injury and a wound that went to stage four plus various bodily infections.

“Physio is very difficult due to nerve pain. The diagnosis of quadriplegia has not changed in the last five months. It is estimated that the first six months are critical to determine the trajectory towards recovery.”

Ms Lynas said that in the last three weeks, doctors had found the right pain management combination to help her husband cope.

The family launched a Go Fund Me page in support of Canon Lynas which has raised more than $100,000 but more is needed for ongoing medical care, caregiver expenses, rehabilitation and specialised equipment.

He hopes to get a new wheelchair in the New Year that can be operated either with his chin or a blow stick.

Seafarers charity the Bermuda Sailors' Home, police officers and figures from the rugby world also attended a special service for Canon Lynas in August.

He was chaplain to the Mission to Seafarers, an associate chaplain for the Bermuda Police Service and the former chairman of the Referee Society of the Bermuda Rugby Football Union.

He was also involved with Family Centre in Beyond Rugby, a joint venture for young people.

Jamie Baum, chairman for BRFURS, said: “On behalf of the Bermuda Rugby Football Union Referees Society, I would like to send our well wishes to Norman.

“Norman was the chairman of the referees society for a number of years and his contributions on and off the field cannot be understated.

“Norman is very much in our thoughts.“

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Published December 31, 2020 at 8:00 am (Updated December 30, 2020 at 1:11 pm)

Canon Norman Lynas will not be returning to Bermuda

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