A campaign has been launched to raise funds in support of 18-year-old Conor Martin after the Co Wexford native suffered a life-changing spinal cord injury in a riding accident earlier this year.

The grandson of trainer Willie Martin and son of assistant trainer Mick Martin is currently in the National Rehabilitation Hospital in Dublin, having previously spent seven weeks in the Mater Hospital’s spinal unit after the fall on Valentine’s Day this year.

However, he is striving to return home to independent living in Screen, Co Wexford. Donations are being sought by friends of Conor to help him overcome the challenges he faces on his path to independence.

Described as “an outgoing, intelligent, witty and sports-loving person with a deep passion for horses”, Conor celebrated his 18th birthday in the Mater alongside his family and friends. As a sixth year student at CBS Wexford, he had ambitions to study Veterinary Medicine abroad this September.

Group 1-winning jockey Niall McCullagh, who has had a long association riding for the Martins, is hoping the racing community can support the important fundraising initiative.

McCullagh told The Irish Field: “I’m devastated by what has happened to Conor at such a young age. The Martin family are fantastic people who I’ve known for a long time. I hope that racing can help to get behind this campaign because support will be very important for Conor and his family at this time.”

As of Tuesday morning, €65,607 has been donated towards the initiative for Conor through an online fundraising website, with a target of €250,000 set.

According to the site: “Conor’s immediate and medium-term requirements include specialised transport and extensive equipment for independent living and ongoing medical treatment including occupational therapy and physiotherapy.

“This initiative is part of a larger fundraising campaign that includes various events over the coming months. If anybody would like to organise an event or contact the committee, please email: cairdeconor2024@gmail.com.”

To donate to the Cairde Conor campaign, please visit: idonate.ie/crowdfunder/cairdeconor