Seven-year-old Dylan Steele from Barrowhouse, Athy, was appointed Mayor of Kildare for a day last week, which made him Ireland’s and perhaps the world’s youngest mayor.
Dylan suffers from Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, a life threatening inherited disorder that involves rapidly worsening muscle weakness.
The youngster was a bona fide elected Mayor last Wednesday. He was formally proposed by Cllr Martin Miley and seconded at a ceremony in Kildare and was formally elected the 68th Mayor of Kildare.
Speaking to the Leader, Dylan’s mother Paula said she was overwhelmed for the effort put in to make Dylan’s day one to remember.
“Dylan just loved it and we were so proud and so thankful to everyone. He loved the chain and sitting in the chamber, bringing order to business.”
During his short term, he was straight into mayoral duties with a tour of Aras Chill Dara and a visit to Naas Fire Station.
“The fire crew came and collected him in the truck and brought him to the fire station. He went on duty there for a while and received a plaque for his work there. He just loved it, it was just fantastic. His sister Kerri and dad Liam went in the fire brigade with him, they were so happy too,” Paula said.
Mayor of Kildare Cllr Micheál “Spike” Nolan personally organised the event. “I would like to thank Dylan and his family for accepting my invitation and for making this one of the best days during my term of office. I would also like to thank the County Manager and staff of Kildare County Council and the firemen from Naas Fire Station for all their efforts in making this a very special and memorable day for Dylan and his family.”
Recently, with the Share a Dream Foundation and the assistance of the gardaí in Athy, Dylan got the chance to serve as a garda at the Aviva Stadium during the Ireland Vs Italy rugby game.
“He’s been busy. He’s been a mayor, a garda and a fireman recently so he’s been in a lot of jobs. He’s hoping to be a soldier next so who knows. We want to make as many happy memories with Dylan as possible and we are very grateful and thankful to people,” Paula added.
Further events are being planned to raise money to help with Dylan’s treatment including a Monster Road Run and family day on May 27 in the Hunting Ground in Athy.
- Lisa Deeney