Supporting Local News

Broadcaster shares story of heart scare to raise awareness

His voice is instantly recognisable across his home county and there’s hardly a sporting occasion without him. When he’s not on Galway Bay FM, he’s an award-winning star of the stage – and if that wasn’t enough, now he’s running for Galway County Council.

But last June, Ollie Turner was facing a different kind of battle, when he presented with symptoms such as breathlessness and palpitations whilst lying in bed, with some simple everyday activities also becoming difficult.

His breathlessness had persisted since February and became worse at night when lying down.

Though Ollie did not show signs of swollen legs, this would be another typical symptom of what he later learned are the symptoms of heart failure.

Now Galway Bay FM’s Head of Sport is going public with his own heart health journey to raise awareness of heart failure, a common condition which will affect one in five in our lifetime.

Ollie is teaming up with the Irish Association of Heart Failure Nurses (IAHFN) for their #BumpUpThePump campaign during European Heart Failure Awareness Week 2024.

Heart failure occurs when the heart does not circulate blood around the body as well as it should. When blood cannot circulate freely, congestion occurs causing fluid retention in the lungs, legs and stomach.

This can occur for a variety of reasons, as a result of damage caused by heart attack, high blood pressure, valve disease, diseases of the heart muscle and heart rhythm disorders. Heart failure can also occur due to other diseases, which ultimately damage the heart such as diabetes, lung diseases, excess alcohol, certain drugs, and infections.

Luckily for Ollie, his heart failure was detected early, but in fact he had symptoms which began many months earlier.

Caption: Ollie Turner at work in Galway Bay FM.

Get the full story in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now, or you can download the digital edition from You can also download our Connacht Tribune App from Apple’s App Store or get the Android Version from Google Play.

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