Memorials

 
TIM KENNELLY 1954-2005



Possibly the darkest hour in the history of the club the town of Listowel and the townspeople within have responded overwhelmingly and blossomed into the black and amber colours of the club and the green and gold of the county to honour the legendry popular household name. Thousands adorned the streets to pay their respects to the Kennelly family and to one of the GAA’s most highly decorated players of the golden era of football. In 1975 Tim burst onto the GAA scene with Kerry winning an All-Ireland U-21 Medal, Munster Senior Medal and All-Ireland Senior Medal. The following year Tim won a North Kerry Championship Medal with Emmets defeating Tarbert in the Final and in 1977 won his first Munster Railway Cup Medal. In 1978 he won another Munster Railway Cup, his second All-Ireland Senior Medal and a County Championship Medal with Feale Rangers (Tim was Captain) and went on to Captain Kerry the following year in 1979 to victory over their great rivals Dublin, and earned himself a legendry All-Star Award. In 1980 he won his fourth Senior All-Ireland Medal (Man of the Match), his second All-Star Award as well his second County Champions Medal with Feale Rangers ensuring victory for his close friend and colleague, Jimmy Dennihan. As the tale would go he won his fifth Senior All-Ireland Medal in 1981 as Kerry went on to defeat Offaly in an epic encounter captained by Jimmy Deenihan. In that same year Tim won another Munster Railway Cup Medal and was captain the following year for another victory. A gentle giant on and off the field and accurately described by Eoin “Bomber” Liston as a “melted-rogue”. He was a true ambassador of the sport, Listowel Town and his club, Emmets. Tim put Listowel and Emmets firmly on the map when he captained Kerry to All-Ireland victory in Sept 1979 and the first Listowel man to bring the Sam Maguire to the banks of the river Feale. Tim received glowing tributes throughout the week from within and beyond the county “on the field he was a colossus, off the field he was hugely popular with everyone” Sean Walsh, Uachtarán Choiste Chontae Chiarraí. Just before CHristmas Tim would have been sitting down with his Feale Rangers teammates to celebrate 25 years since the 1980 victory over Austin Stacks which Timmy featured so prominently in. While Tim’s passing is undoubtedly sudden and untimely, the immense turnout and warm tributes from all over must offer descent consolation for the loss of their closest and most valued sporting colleague and friend.

BURIAL TRIBUTES 10/12/05


Billy Keane (Son of Late John B.Keane, former Listowel Emmets Player & Committee Member & close friend of the Late Tim Kennelly)

 
The last few days took its toll and I suppose years of roaring at referees as well eventually catches up with you! I know this is a desperately sad occasion but I know Timmy would like us to leave here with some happy memories and a smile on our faces if such a thing is possible. I couldn’t help but seeing the tribute that was paid to him by the townspeople, by everybody here, his friends and his team-mates and everybody and the trouble the club went to, Tadgh Moriarty in particular has been absolutely magnificent in the last few days and I think Eamon O’Carroll, alias “Ned The Dead” I’m sure this was the hardest job he ever had because Timmy and himself were so close but its funny as the hearse was coming up, I just thought to myself that was the first time that Timmy and Eamon ever went for a drive without stopping off somewhere along the way! Another great friend of Timmy’s is here is going to say a few words is Stephen Stack. Stephen can speak for himself of what Timmy means to him but I know what Timmy thought of Stephen, I’d say he was kind of a third son and he treated him accordingly picking him for the Kerry Team when he was about 18! Stephen is a great club man, I think he’s going to carry the flame from Timmy if such a thing is possible even though he’s won two All-Irelands which I suppose doesn’t make him a bad person! I would ask Stephen now to say a few words in honour of our great friend and hero.

Stephen Stack (Listowel Emmets Club Committee Member, Senior Player, Former Kerry All-Ireland Medal winner (’86 & ’97), & close friend of the Late Tim Kennelly). 
First of all its a high an honour as anyone could bestow on me on behalf of Tim and for Nuala, Joanne and Tadgh and Noel to ask me to speak here. Never have I been more intimidated more than I’ve been to put these words together because I found it very difficult to try and express what I thought would be a tribute that would be befitting to this man and what he means to us in the town and what he means to everyone who knew him. Reverend Father, friends, GAA Colleagues and sporting heroes from all over the country we’re gathered here in our thousands today to rest a legendry sportsman but also to celebrate the life of a gentleman and loving person. Tim Kennelly had an illustrious career that was encrusted with the highest honours in sporting recognition that our nation can bestow. He lived in the rarefied atmosphere of five All-Ireland medals, he traveled the world as a sporting ambassador in the green and gold, yet a soft spoken man often preferred to have a quite drink with his family and friends along the still waters of the River Feale. I first remember taking a picture of Tim when I was sixteen years of age and it was in January, he was wintering well after an All-Ireland and he was carrying as Mick O’Dwyer used to say a small little bit of condition! I knew that because it was unusual to see any man wearing two track suits and a black polythene sack turned over him and I saw it first hand at that stage the kind of punishment that that man was prepared to put his body through to achieve his sporting goals and it is something that inspired me through all my own career. He was a massive influence on me and the generation of Listowel footballers that came after him. He imbued an enormous competitive instinct in us and a never say die attitude he himself was famous for on the field. He won two treasured North Kerry Championship and two treasured North Kerry League medals and of course he always reminded everybody that he won four Town League medals with the Boro! – they didn’t quite match the four and three North Kerry medals won by Mikey, Noel and Tadgh and I know that was always a great source of banter in the house. His love and commitment to the Emmets was exceptional and when he finished playing in the mid Eighties he was a selector for many years as well as a coach and mentor to all of us who came after him and in later years was responsible for raising thousands of euros as a key member of our finance committee for the development of the fine facilities that we have today. Not just now but he’s done that over the years, his commitment to this club has been absolutely phenomenal. We were delighted two years ago as a club to have honoured Tim’s sporting achievements at a gala dinner attended by his many friends and sporting colleagues from all over the country, but my abiding memory of that night was his own speech because despite that mans success he’s one of the most humble, most dignified people that you ever in your life came across. He gave everything and asked for nothing and spoke lovingly in particular of his wife, Nuala, a wonderful wife who’s been a marvelous mother, caring and loving at all times and he absolutely adored her and Noel and Tadgh and Joanne that he was incredibly proud of. I know because I spent more quite moments talking to him than anybody and it’s then that he would open up and it’s then that he would tell you what was important to him in life. He was held in very high esteem by his opponents and none more so that by his adversary Tony Hanahoe and I remember before that function happened we needed a guest speaker and at short notice we contacted Tony. However, it wasn’t until after the event was over that he explained why he couldn’t give us an answer when we rang we had to wait for an hour and he had actually forfeited a trip out to the Melbourne Cup that he had paid for and as he said to me the day after the function when he was told that it was Tim Kennelly we were honouring, there was only one decision and that was a very easy decision. As a person Tim was warm-hearted, charismatic, vulnerable and passionate about his family, town and county but he was also as “Bomber” Liston very very affectionately said in the many warm and glowing tributes paid to Tim during the week, “a melted rogue!” and I believe myself that melted rogue is term probably invented in Listowel. You could not get the better of him, you just couldn’t, Tadgh and Noel and myself we were just talking the other night. I remember on one occasion I managed to match him and he left me away with it. We were inside in John B’s after a match and there was a couple of American tourists that Billy was entertaining and he was trying to tell them all about the town and so forth and he said here we’ve two All-Ireland Medal winners here inside in the bar and I was getting very nervous because I was feeling awfully inadequate next to Timmy I was praying she’d ask me the first question and she did funny enough and she said “how many All-Ireland medals have you?” and I paused for a minute and I gave Tim a little bit of a wink and I said well I’ll tell you now between the two of us we have seven!. He was a very very shrewd judge of football, actually the second last time I spoke to him was before the Moyvane game when I made a cameo appearance against Moyvane, it was at the drawn match against Moyvane he said “If you’re not starting will you ever mark Paddy Mulvihill on the sideline!”. The last time that I did speak to Tim was on Sunday night and as usual after the match we had a conversation analysing the game and then I asked him the question that I always ask him if I happened to meet him after the game was how we going to beat Ballyduff in the final. We spoke for about an hour and actually I can feel him looking up at me now saying “Stephen say no more now encase there’s a few of ‘em listening”. Finally, I just want to say that Tim reached out beyond the world of sport and he touched the hearts and minds of those who’s fortune it was to have known him and although his flame may have flickered for now his is a light that will never be extinguished, thank you.

Before Jimmy Deenihan went on to deliver his most memorable and moving tribute to his great friend of and fellow player of old, Billy aptly pointed out that from now Timmy Kennelly would be a Gleann man now that he’s buried in the Gleann! and Billy then went on to say that he had met a man outside Pat Whelan's Shop on Market St. that morning who told him that “The Horse” is going to be buried in the new cemetery and that everybody would be dying to be buried there from now on! In Billy's own words then “Jimmy Deenihan was always a great friend of Timmy's event though they were often rivals when we played Finuge, if played was the right word, warfare would be correct term! they were always friends even though they were two totally different men. You’d also notice a few minutes before an All-Ireland they’d get into a corner, they’d kick the ball to each other and punch a few passes to each other, there wouldn’t be anything said there was no need they had that loyalty to each other down through the years and when Jimmy was first elected to the Dáil in the Ashe Memorial Hall in Tralee, Timmy had worn out several pairs of shoes canvassing for him and a few small enough lads had him up on their shoulders when he was elected the usual shouting and roaring went on and one fella was buckling a bit because Jimmy had put on a bit of condition at the time so Timmy pushed him aside and he put Jimmy up on his shoulders and he looked up at Jimmy and he said “Jimmy I carried you all my life” and Jimmy looked down at the horse and he said “That’s what horses are for!”. Stephen has kind of covered the club and Jimmy’s going to finish up and I just want to say good-bye to my friend, loved that man very much and how proud we all are of him and how proud we are of our club and our town and of the Kennelly family for the absolutely tremendous dignity they showed over the last few days, I’d like to hand you over to Jimmy, thank you”.

Jimmy Deenihan TD (Former Kerry & Feale Rangers Fellow Player & close friend of the Late Tim Kennelly). 
By the vast numbers that came to the funeral, that visited the Kennelly household over the past week, that lined the streets last night and that came from all parts of this country, they made an expression, they made a statement that Tim Kennelly was the special person and it’s a great source of consolation and condolence for his family that by this great turnout has shown and demonstrated what people really thought of Tim Kennelly. I had the privilege of playing with Timmy and also against him but fortunately for me mostly on the same side. With Listowel u-16’s and minors we won a North Kerry Championship in 1968 I think it was against Moyvane. With St. Michaels College we won the County Cup, I was centre forward, Timmy was on one wing, Gerdy Kiernan was on the other wing. Then with Feale Rangers we played together for ten years we played in five County Championships we won two. Tim was man of the match in ’78. In 1980 after about five minutes he dislocated and badly damaged his shoulder and he was getting medical attention and I went up to him and I said Tim if you go off you’ll destroy the spirit of this team. At that stage we were about a goal and two points down and looked like we were going to be destroyed. Another individual would have said this is a handy way of getting out of this slaughter and Tim said “I’m staying on the pitch I’m here to win this game and also I’m going to do this for you” because it meant if we won I would be captain of Kerry the following year. Tim went on to play a tremendous game on that occasion. He was marking Ger Power and Sean Kelly mentioned it last night, he even had the audacity with a hand in a sling as far as I recall to dummy Ger Power towards the end of the game. He chipped the ball over his head Ger went for the block down, Timmy chipped it over his head got the ball and hammered it down the field and turned defense into attack which he did so many times. He was a driving force behind that Feale Rangers team and many of his colleagues are here today and we just loved Tim. They were very much influenced by him as well, led by him, at times maybe, the odd time the wrong road must be said. I always remember a time we were outside in Finuge training for a game against Austin Stacks and they decided to go into Kennelly's Bar for a glass of lemonade! Anyway, they decided about 2 o’clock in the morning to head for Puck Fair including the trainer Conín Riordan. Off they headed to Puck, Johnny Mulvihill in one car was stopped at Laharn let me add – didn’t stop him going to Puck Fair. They arrived in Puck Fair they spent three days there arrived back for training Thursday Evening. There were fellas getting sick on the sideline. Signs on we lost that game against Stacks but we’ll always remember Puck Fair. I remember saying to Timmy the week after, how had he the money to stay in Puck Fair for the week, he said Pat Joe McEnenry had a cheque book. I suppose the greatest years in our careers were the years we spent together playing with Kerry and our careers coincided. I was there I was the playing the first day in Tullamore against Offaly when Tim made his debut for Kerry and it must be said the man that really pushed him most and convinced the selectors to get him on that Kerry team was Andy Molyneaux here in town. Andy Molyneaux was a special friend of Timmys and I remember when Andy died, again before his time Timmy was the man in there making arrangements, looking after the family and all the rest. Andy convinced the selectors we were all convinced here in North Kerry that Timmy Kennelly was the answer to Kerry’s problem that time was centre back. He turned out to be the greatest centre back that this county ever produced and one of the greatest that ever played Gaelic Football in this country and that’s a fact and no one can deny it as the song says! I remember the great evenings with several of our colleagues and we were driving to training and Timmy had always one special singer John Denver was all the go that time and I was trying to think of a few lines of John Denver that would be appropriate for today and there was one that I think would be someway appropriate… “I’m sorry to be leaving you, good-bye again. Why do you always cry when I have to go? but I have to go and meet a friend of mine familiar with my name”. I think God would be very familiar with Tim Kennellys’ name, I think there’s a place in heaven for Tim Kennelly for sure. I remember those great games, ’75 and then the four in a row and just could I say sincerely I’m delighted that so many of our team turned up here today. There was a great bond between our team on the field of play. Maybe not off it that much because we were spread all over the county and the country but I must say I felt that special bond there today outside the church, in the church, last night. There was a special bond between that team something that people would not understand unless they were playing on that team there were special understandings built up. Words hadn’t to be said people understood each other it came just spontaneously to us, it was intuitive, was within us. I’m delighted also that the man that influenced all of us so much is here with us today, he was here last night he was here again today that was the great Mick O’Dwyer because he loved Tim Kennelly. What he did say today, we walked a fair bit last night he’s seventy now almost we walked a lot today. He said “Jesus Tim Kennelly, he would think this would be worse than any wire to wire!” but also it’s fair to say that the great Dubs turned up here as well today. The expression on Tony Hanahoe’s face just said it all he was standing there when we were walking past. You could see that he had lost someone who meant a lot to him and as Stephen said Tony was heading abroad when we asked him to come down as special guest for that wonderful occasion to mark the career of Tim Kennelly two years ago and at the same time to make money for the sportsfield and he said I just could not refuse you because it was for Tim Kennelly. I think that just about said it all. On the field of the play, Stephen has touched on this. Tim was not alone a great player, skillful, strong he had great endurance, he could run for ever. He invited people to hit him. Tim didn’t hit people he invited people to hit him because he loved being hit. That’s a fact the more he was hit the more he loved it because you just couldn’t hurt him and that was the way it was and that was more mentally and physically but I remember most of the drive and that great motivator, when heads were down when the back was to the wall, when you were playing against the gale force wind when you couldn’t get the ball out of your own half, Kennelly would take the ball on the goal line and he’d make a sorting out the middle of the pitch taking everybody with him in the process and turning what seemed inevitable defeat into possible victory. More than often, victory! That’s what I could remember the great heart of the man, the great honesty of the man on the field of play. Of course he was very funny as well and I remember after the 1981 All-Ireland he got a bit of stick before the match. Paudi was recounting the time that Micko brought a few of the boys in I don’t know was I one of them myself or not. He gave us about forty trips around the pitch anyway and we were walking off and Micko used to stop us after every four or five rounds. Sean Walsh was telling the story today “lads ye’re in horrible shape, ye’ll win nothing with the shape ye’re in at the moment” and then he’d go again and we were walking off the pitch anyway and Timmy and Paudi were walking near Micko and Paudi was a bit fed up of it at this stage and he said Micko don’t worry about the fellas that were here today worry about the fellas who are not here! And I remember after the All-Ireland in 1981, Timmy came in after getting man of the match he threw his jersey anyway into the bag and he turned around to Micko and he said “you can thank the porter men for winning today's match!”. There was another side to Timmy Kennelly as well. Timmy was very precautious he grew up very young and when Timmy was about thirteen or fourteen he was dancing all over North Kerry. He had a couple of great mentors, a fellow called a the “Walker Buckley” and Vincent Savage and they trained him in very quick and very early. I remember Timmy in the Central Ballroom in Ballybunion he was a great jiver as we used to call it then and the girls used to be lining up to dance with him. The great carnival man he graced Finuge and Moyvane with parallel with dignity and class and everything else on the floor, but I remember one occasion we were back in Finuge. Timmy was there, Den Stack and all the boys were there that night and as the song goes they were coming on strong this very beautiful elegant woman walked into the bar and heads turned I remember it quite well. Anyway Timmy was always the great man to anticipate competition or to read a situation. Timmy moved immediately. There on that night in Finuge he met Nuala. The greatest move of his life the greatest wife any man could have met. She supported Timmy throw thick and thin, a woman with immense dignity and who has retained that grace and dignity to this very day. She’s a wonderful woman a woman that I have total admiration for. As a result of that meeting in Finuge they got married in 1978. I remember around that time going out to Kennellys in Coolaclarig after dances. It was always a great place to be invited there was always a great welcome in the house for you, there was always drink and turkey and bacon and corned bread and anything you wanted in that particular house and the woman in there who had always a big welcome and she’s here today Mage. Tim always loved his mother and every day he used to go out and visit her and pretend to be busy around the place if he wasn’t and always have a pike in his hand or grab one. Mickey Kennelly his father I think it’s only right to mention him today. When Timmy was born he was destined to play for the Kerry Team. Mickey had no other ambition for Timmy but to play for Kerry and to wear the green and gold. The same as any father in this country, Mickey realised that ambition. He was a great club man as well and he was a great football supporter. So ladies and gentlemen I think by your presence by the spontaneous expression of emotion, affection, admiration for Timmy Kennelly shown over the past week both locally and Nationally and even Internationally we realise that we have lost somebody very special here today. A part of all of us I feel that there is a part of me gone because Timmy has died. I will just end by a quotation from the great play-write George Fitzmaurice and it goes as follows “ What matters now what he did or didn’t do since he is dead but for him and the likes of him, the sun will always shine and the flowers will smile on the green grass of Ireland”. Thank you very much”


GARRY McMAHON 1937-2008


Garry McMahon was born in September 1937, the eldest son of Bryan and Kitty McMahon. During his formative years, while his father was quickly making a name for himself as a playwright and novelist, Garry was occupying himself as youngsters of that period did, with a variety of simple pastimes for example fishing in the Feale, snaring rabbits, picking conkers, playing hide and seek through the back streets of Listowel and swimming in the river. Enjoyable as these were, however, one pastime stood head and shoulders above all others, Gaelic Football, Kerry's other religion, and, inspired by songs and stories of the greats of Kerry's past as well as by the exploits of the stars of the day, Garry and his contemporaries played football in back yards, on the streets and in the sportsfield until darkness or their mothers called a halt. Facilities for young footballers of that era were basic, even primitive; the goals were often just two coats or jumpers thrown on the ground and, like the Catholic feast of Easter, were movable so that when the play returned from the other half of the field, the goals had frequently shrunk to the dismay of the forwards. Many of the players played in bare feet or in their ordinary shoes while the football in the 1940's was as likely to be an inflated pigs bladder or a sock filled with hay. If a football was required by a group of boys they had to go door to door in their own street collecting for it; the cost was approximately £1, not a lot in today's terms but in Ireland of the 1940's it was half a weeks wages. If the target was reached, the football, which belonged to all, was jealously guarded because a replacement was in no way guaranteed.


Even in these primitive conditions Garry showed at an early age, that he had a great aptitude for the game and the range of talents that he possessed i.e. great hands, good speed, an accurate kick and an eye for a goal, marked him out as one for the future, someone to be watched. When Frank Sheehy, who afterwards became Chairman of the Kerry County Board and the Munster Council, returned to teach in Listowel' s primary school, organised under age football became a fact of life and in the local Town League Garry quickly established himself as the star of the Church Street team, The Ashes as they were known. In St. Michaels College under the tutelage of John Molyneaux, who had reintroduced football into the school, Garry gave many stellar displays and was a major factor in the schools first Kerry Colleges victory, the Dunloe Cup of 1954-55 when the team was captained by Moyvane writer and philosopher, John Moriarty, who passed away last year RIP. All these and his displays with Listowel and Feale Rangers were bound to bring him to the attention of the Kerry Minor selectors and, in 1955, he donned the green and gold of Kerry for the first time but did not enjoy any great success as they were defeated by Tipperary in the Munster Final.


In those years there were no under 21 teams so many players were lost in the gulf that existed between minor and senior, particularly at inter-county level. Whether it was that or the fact that Garry was going to College in Dublin, he slipped off the Kerry radar for a few years but, after Kerry football had gone through a dismal period from 1956 to 1958 the County Board organised a trial game between the residents and non residents after which he was restored to the Kerry team and went on to win 2 Senior All-Ireland titles with them in 1959 and 1962 and 2 National Leagues. His performance in the 1959 Munster Final, when he scored 2-2 in the first half led Micheal 0 Hehir to say "This morning Garry McMahon was the son of a famous father, this evening Bryan McMahon is the father of a famous son". Garry's greatest claim to fame is that he is credited with scoring the fastest goal ever scored in an All-Ireland final. In the 1962 final against Roscommon he fisted the ball into the Roscommon net in 34 seconds, a record that stands to the present day. Despite his success at County level, Garry never forgot his roots and always turned out with Listowel Emmets with whom he won a North Kerry League and Championship and he never failed to turn up for Town League duty with the Ashes and won many medals with them. One medal which eluded him was a Senior Kerry County Championship medal; the nearest he came was the 1962 final when the Feale Rangers lost to John Mitchells.

In recent years Garry proved that he had inherited his father's gift with words and crafted some beautiful poems, ballads and songs which delighted and charmed the listeners. In this he was following in his father's footsteps as a writer of beautiful ballads. Garry took this gift to another level as he also composed two beautiful masses in Irish. In addition he possessed a sweet singing voice which enabled him to record his own songs and issue them on C.D's, the last of which he launched before Christmas. These C.D's and songs will keep his memory alive even though his physical presence will be denied to his family and friends. The written word, be it a book, a poem or a song, conveys a form of immortality on the writer or those mentioned in them, as much as anything human can. As long as they survive, the names of those associated with them are kept alive and remembered. Micheál 0 Guithín, the son of Peig Sayers, said it beautifully in a poem called "M'Anam Beidh I Leabhar" Seo mar a dúirt sé

"Ni bhfaighidh mé Coíche Bás
Cé go gcuirfear mé faoi bhrat bán san úir 
M' Anam beidh Heabhar
Is beidh sé ann de shíor"


Bhuel, beidh anam Ghearóid beo ina chuid amhráin, aifrinn agus dánta. Fad is a bheidh siad ar fáil beidh cuid de ar fáil freisin mar-shampla a léargas ar an saol, a chuid tuairimí, a chuimhní, a anam agus mar sin coiméadfar a chuimhne buan.


His wife, his children, his brothers and other relatives have their own treasure trove of memories to sustain them of a loving husband, father, brother and friend, of days and nights filled with song and laughter, ceol and craic. While many will miss him and grieve for his passing, theirs is the greatest loss and we offer them our deepest sympathy and the support of our prayers. For Garry our prayer is simply "Go raibh Leaba imeasc na naomh agat igcuideachta d'athar is do mháthar"


So Garry, thanks for the memories, may you rest in peace and in the words of the ancient Romans as they bade farewell to fallen heroes "Ave atque Vale, Hail and Farewell".


John 0 Flaherty
 

MICHAEL DOWLING - CLUB PRESIDENT

 

It is with great sadness that the Listowel Emmets G.A.A wishes to announce the passing this morning (10th May 2011) of Michael Dowling. Michael became President of the Emmets Club at our AGM in early February, for many years Michael played with the club and was the face of Listowel for All Ireland Fleadh Cheoils and master of ceremonies welcoming young and old from home and abraod to our town.

He was a strong and competitive footballer for Tarbert and Listowel and was a member of the Listowel Emmets team that won the 1957 North Kerry Championship.

Indeed he was chairman of the club for a time and was president of Listowel Emmets GAA club at the time of his death. An enthusiastic card player of the game 41 he was delighted to have had the chance to enjoy a few games of cards in the Emmets club house before his passing.

He will be sadly missed by his daughters, Anne, Geraldine, Imelda and Muriel, sons in law, grandchildren and extended family. He will also be sorely missed by all those who know him through gaa, music, song and story, Fleadhanna Ceoil, the All Ireland Wrenboy competition and all the other community events he was involved in. Ní fheicimíd a leitheíd ariís go deo.

 

TOM FITZGERALD - VICE PRESIDENT

A tribute to the late Tom Fitzgerlad by Vincent Carmody - Uactaran Emmet CLG

The late Tom Fitzgerald who sadly passed away on the 16th July last was a loyal servant to his home club, Listowel Emmet’s for over fifty years. He served the club as a player, administrator and as trainer-coach to various teams in the club.
On the field of play he was a member of an outstanding Listowel minor team of the mid nineteen fifties and also played on the North Kerry minor team who annexed the County minor championship in 1956. Tom won a North Kerry senior championship medal with the Emmet’s team who defeated Clounmacon in the 1957 decider.
Shortly afterwards, and like many others of his age, he emigrated to England, where he stayed until the early sixties, when he returned to University College Dublin, enrolled as a business student which resulted in a Bachelor of Commerce degree.
Returning to North Kerry to teach, he re-immersed himself in the football scene and was involved with the North Kerry board as vice chairman from nineteen sixty eight until nineteen seventy three, he was also elected as North Kerry Board Secretary in nineteen seventy two, a position which he retained for the following twenty three years.  During this time he also served as youth officer with the County Board for two years, nineteen eighty and eighty one, and was Emmet’s club chairman for two years, nineteen eighty two and three.
However, in the club he is probably best remembered for the outstanding work he done as coach- trainer and the wonderful victories archived by the teams he trained at all levels from nineteen seventy two till two thousand and seven.
Winning teams that Tom was associated with were as follows:
1972, North Kerry Senior League and Championship, County Junior.
1976, North Kerry Senior Championship.
1985, County under sixteen.
1995, North Kerry Senior League.
1996, North Kerry Senior League.
1997, North Kerry Senior Championship and North Kerry U21.
1998, North Kerry Senior Championship and North Kerry U21.
1999, County Junior plus promotion to Division I County League.
2007, North Kerry Minor Championship.