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Founders of Killarney’s oldest GAA club remembered

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Dr Crokes commemorated its founding fathers of 1886 by unveiling a plaque at the entrance to the Railway Road on Tuesday evening.

Brothers Philip Culligan and John Paul Culligan pictured with Noel O'Sullivan in Dr Crokes GAA Club House.

Catherine Coffey Des Hayes Bernadette O'Sullivan who are descendants of Michael O'Sullivan

Descendants and relatives of the 18 founding members of the Dr Crokes GAA Club pictured with President of the GAA Larry McCarthy Matt O'Neill (club chairman) and Fr. Tom Looney at the unveiling of new monument to commemorate the founding of the Dr Crokes Club in 1886.

Fr Tom Looney Brother Pat Bishop Ray Browne Mayor of the Killarney Municipal District Marie Moloney Matt O'Neill Chairman of Dr Crokes Patrick O'Sullivan Jackie Looney President of Dr Crokes Bishop Ray BrowneFr Paddy Eamonn Fitzgerald.Unveiling of new monument to commemorate the founding of the Dr Crokes Club in 1886

Matt O' Neill Patrick O'Sullivan Jackie Looney and Larry McCarthy unveiling the new monument

Matt O’Neill, club chairperson addressed the distinguished audience, which included Larry McCarthy, President of the GAA, assembled outside the Courthouse on a balmy sun -filled evening and paid tribute to the ‘18 Dangerous Dreamers’ as the founders were fondly known.
“These were young men, some as young as 16 years. These were brave men, who earned a free Ireland, governed by its own people. These were true Irish men, who wished to freely live their Gaelic culture and heritage and decided to express that ancient heritage through the medium of our Gaelic games and under the newly-formed banner of the Gaelic Athletic Association. They embraced a wonderful dream, a wonderful vision, aisling breá, aisling áilinn, aisling misniúil,” said Mr McCarthy.

Clrr Niall ‘Botty’ O’Callaghan is a staunch member of Dr Crokes and acted as M.C. for the historic occasion and excelled in the formalities in a professional presentation of the 55 minutes allotted.

He introduced the President of the GAA, Larry McCarthy, and Fr Tom Looney who captured the essence of the extremely dangerous times of the 1880’s in Killarney. It was a time of great turmoil due to the Land League and for the ‘18 Dangerous Dreamers’ who founded the club.
Sports journalist Éamonn Fitzgerald welcomed the special guests present, representing the descendants of the 18 founders. Several of the family descendants attended and one represented the families during the formalities. A total of 14 were there in person and four more were video-linked in from USA, Belgium, England, Australia.

The live streaming of the historic event was courtesy of club member John C . O’Shea.

Among the guests were John and Philip Culligan, formerly of Ross Rd, representing their mother, Nee Crowe, a relative of Archbishop Croke.
When the formalities concluded the attendees went to the Dr Crokes clubhouse at Lewis Rd. to join members in music, song and presentations.

Maggie McAuliffe, Club Events Officer and her many co-helpers provided an excellent array of various foods.

Genealogist Rachel Foley, who was very helpful in tracing the descendants, is also the club’s Cultural AND Scór Officer.
She presented her Scór teams for a half hour of wonderful entertainment.
Led by musical director Noel O’Sullivan, the entertainers included Liam Randles, Aoife O’Callaghan, Jean Foley, Saoirse O’Sullivan and Teegan O’Sullivan.

Sheila Dickson coordinated the celebrations in the clubhouse, where the descendants were presented with copies of the Dr Crokes History book.

One of the descendants said: “Thanks to your excellent research I found out more about my family here tonight than I never knew. Thank you Dr Crokes, you are a wonderful family and you do things so well.’
The President of the GAA, who had visited the club house and amenities earlier in the day and saw the U 11 and U 13 teams being coached on their regular Tuesday evening sessions, was highly impressed.

He stressed the importance of tradition and how Dr Crokes valued that. Jokingly, he said it was hard for him as a Cork man to instance the case of Evan Looney, a fourth-generation Dr Crokes player who was man of the match in the Munster U20 final on the previous evening.

President Larry Mc Cathy, left Lewis Rd to drive back to Dublin with memories of the beautiful tones of Scór winner Saoirse singing ‘The Parting Glass’.

The 18 founders of Dr Crokes (Descendants in brackets)
1 Jack Crowe
2 His brother Paddy Crowe, Railway men ( Tim Crowe, grandson and grand-nephew)
3Con Courtney, a merchant ( Sheila Mulcahy, Clochán, Caisleáin Griaire, granddaughter)
4Denny Courtney , ( Mike Looney, College Street)
5 Jim Galvin ( Galvin relatives, Boston)
6Mick Gleeson, a boatman( Bridget Healy (née Gleeson, golf star)
7 Dan Guerin (Áine O’Reilly,nee Kidney granddaughter from Cloyne)
8 Con Guerin, (Sarah Moore, nee Fitzsimons ,granddaughter, Oldcastle, Meath)
9 James Kissane, a French polisher ( John O’Donoghue, descendant Coolcaslough)
10 Martin Kissane, a French polisher( Martin Kissane, descendant Coolcaslough)
11 John Langford, Manager of O’ Sullivan’s farm at Killeen and two-years later a founding member of the Kerry GAA County Board. (Descendant Des Hayes, Tralee)
12 Mike Looney, a Railway man (Evan Looney, great great grandson. Kerry U20 star)
13 Jim McGuiness, Henn Street, a carpenter( Colin O’Driscoll relative, Belgium)
14 Michael Moriarty , High Street a draper. (Drs Denis and Michael Moriarty, Dublin)
15 Maurice Moynihan Pound Row ( Kayleen Kenvard, Australia)
16 James O’Leary (Sneem and College Street publican (Dónal/Bríd/Mike Cahalane, Sneem. Brian Dempsey ,Dublin)
17 Michael O’Sullivan, brother-in-law of Charles O’ Sullivan, Bishop of Kerry 1917-1929. (Bernadette O’Sullivan, Galway, great granddaughter)
18 Rob Roberts, Pound Row (Sean O’Donoghue, Killarney, great grandson)

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Killarney man to launch second Irish history book

By Sean Moriarty Killarney native Patrick O’Sullivan Greene will launch his second book in the Great Southern Killarney on December 2. O’Sullivan Greene explains Éamon de Valera’s mission to gain […]

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By Sean Moriarty

Killarney native Patrick O’Sullivan Greene will launch his second book in the Great Southern Killarney on December 2.

O’Sullivan Greene explains Éamon de Valera’s mission to gain recognition for the newly formed Irish republic in New York in 1919 in his latest book ‘Revolution at the Waldorf: America and the Irish War of Independence’.

Without American recognition and funding the young Irish Government was sure to fail against the might of the British Empire and the book tells the story of how de Valera and Ireland-based Michael Collins – much to the defiance of the British authorities at Dublin Castle – got the new State off the ground.

O’Sullivan grew up in New Street and is now based in Beaufort after a career in finance took him all over the world including Dublin, London, New York and France.

“Killarney is the natural place for me to launch the book,” he told the Killarney Advertiser.

“There will be an interesting mix of people there.”

O’Sullivan Greene published his first book, ‘Crowdfunding the Revolution: The First Dáil Loan and the Battle for Irish Independence’, in 2020.

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Caring group craft charity blankets

By Michelle Crean One community group have shown that they care deeply for others by crafting handmade blankets for charity. Using their range of skills and some colourful wool, members […]

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By Michelle Crean

One community group have shown that they care deeply for others by crafting handmade blankets for charity.

Using their range of skills and some colourful wool, members of Kilcummin Community Care worked together to make blankets for service users on the Kerry Cork Cancer Health Link Bus.

“Each blanket is assigned as a personal gift to the clients using the Cancer Link Bus and is kept by them,” Kate Fleming, Chairperson of Kilcummin Community Care, said.

The knitting of the squares to make the blankets began at a gathering in the Rose Hotel in 2018. It was a gathering of different volunteer groups.

The Kerry Cork Cancer Health Link Bus were requesting knitted squares to make blankets for the clients who were using their facilities, she explained.

“Kilcummin Community Care were knitting at the time, so it was decided to help out this worthy cause. We received donations of wool from people in the parish and surrounding areas. Kilcummin ICA also got involved in the efforts.”

During the two years of COVID-19, members of both organisations continued to knit and are still knitting to the present day.

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