Yvonne Connolly 'grateful to be alive' after life-threatening horse riding accident

Yvonne Connolly has revealed she’s in recovery from a life-threatening horse riding accident.

Connolly (45) is an experienced rider who rode her first horse when she was 17, and wrote on Instagram last night that she is “grateful to be alive” after the incident.

“Four fractures in my eye socket and cheek bone and my nose completely smashed,” she wrote. “I also broke my arm. 2 surgeries over the last 10 days under the magical hands of Dr Kumara Ekanayake (maxillofacial) and the incredible staff at St James. Thanks too [sic] all my friends and family and to those who sent such lovely messages of support.”

Maxillofacial is specialised facial surgery and Dr Ekanayake is a consultant surgeon based in Dublin.

Earlier this year, Yvonne and her 13-year-old daughter Ali competed in the Dublin Horse Show after Ali’s own accident reignited Yvonne’s love for the equestrian world. The mother-of-three hadn’t been on a horse in 20 years, but that changed last year when Ali had an unfortunate accident just two days after getting her pony.

“When Ali broke her wrist and arm, Chris needed to be exercised so I got up and started to ride her pony. I got bitten by the bug and I was just completely obsessed and very quickly realised that I wanted to get back into it. Before I knew it, the competitive edge came out in me and I was doing everything from hunter trialling to horse racing,” she told the Irish Independent in August.

“We are both loving it. Every cloud has a silver lining. Ali is so happy that I’m horse riding with her and that probably wouldn’t have happened if she hadn’t had her accident. Good things often come from terrible situations.”

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