Sad week for Ladies Gaelic Football

Sad week for Ladies Football. By Fr. Liam Kelleher PRO

Every body associated with sport and particularly with Ladies
Football were shocked and saddened with the untimely death
this week of two of our brightest young stars, in traffic
accidents. On Saturday, Aisling McGing, eighteen was on
her way to see her sisters play with Mayo against Galway
in the Connaught Senior Championship, she was involved in
an accident and lost her fight for life on Saturday evening
at 9pm. I did not hear the sad news until Sunday from Michael
Ryan the Waterford manager. I immediately rang Denise Horan
who was in a state of shock as were so many other people.
My first prayer was for young Aisling that she was at peace
with the Lord and then my prayers was for her family her
friends, her club players and her county. One cannot find
words to offer consolation and strength particularly to
family members on a tragedy like this and I suppose the
physical support and presence of so many people without
saying anything can help in its own little way. The uppermost
thoughts on my mind was for her heartbroken parents and
family members and I asked Denise to ring me with the funeral
details, so that I could attend. I was no sooner off the
phone when I got word that a parishioner had died and news
on Monday morning of the deaths of mothers of 2 parishioners
and another very good friend of mine. One of the mothers
was Majella Creedon who lost her own son Tom whom I knew
well and a brilliant Cork Senior Footballer in an accident
20 years ago. I made two removals on Monday evening and
rang Ita Hannon after one of them at 11.30 pm and she told
me she was in Mayo still awaiting the arrival of Aisling’s
remains to the church, so huge was the crowd.

On Tuesday I celebrated the Parish mass at 10am, I had a
funeral mass at 11am another at 12 Noon and another here
at 2.30pm. At every one of those masses as well as remembering
all the deceased, the death of Aisling and my concern for
her family was uppermost on my mind and while I could not
be there in person with them in their time of grief I certainly
was there in spirit. From all the reports I have heard there
was massive support and this is what is so good about sport,
it draws people together in happy times and it unites people
in grief. I know that that support will be of great consolation
to the McGing family and I know that people will support
them because they will grieve for their daughter and sister
every day of their lives. Another tragedy.

Normally on Wednesday evening or Thursday morning I would
try and do a preview of the matches for the week-end. But
on Wednesday evening I went to see Limerick defeat Cork
in the Munster Junior Championship which was followed by
Minor training until 9.45. On Thursday morning left for
our Annual Carlow College re-union at 8am. We had mass at
5pm followed by the re-union dinner. I left at 7.30pm to
attend a Munster ladies Football meeting in Charleville
and at 8.30 I rang Munster Sec Marie Halvey telling her
I would be a bit late. She was crying on the phone and had
just hear about the tragic death of Naomi Mulcahy Sixteen
in another road accident barely an hour earlier. Naomi was
one of her star under 16 players and had worn the Limerick
Jersey with pride on occasions. She was much more than a
footballer she travelled and other St Ailbes club members
with, Marie to matches and helped out in any way needed,
especially at a lines person. She was a lovely bubbly girl
full of life and commitment. I did not recognise her by
name but recognised her instantly when I went to her mothers
house with Marie on Friday afternoon to offer my sympathy
to her heartbroken mother, sister and brothers. The meeting
and the tragedy was all the more sad because Naomi’s dad,
a committed rugby man, died suddenly in January watching
on TV, his beloved Munster playing. I was there again to
see at first hand what real grief and loss is, something
I have experienced so many times in my 35 years of priestly
ministry, but I can never really understand why these tragedies
happen. Perhaps none of us will ever know or understand
until Gods plan is revealed for all of us at some future

Again to Naomi’s family as well as the other 2 victims of
the crash, our prayers and thoughts are with them and every
member of their families friends and clubs. I know again
like in Aisling’s case there will be a huge outpouring of
grief at Naomi’s removal on Sunday evening and for the funeral
mass on Monday at 11.30am Mass in Herberstown. Our world
and the world of sport will be much the poorer for their
passing and our prayer and our wish is that the world that
that both graced with their talent, graciousness and charm
will add even more to the eternal happiness we know and
believe that exists in heaven. Girls we wish you a fond
farewell and we wish that both of you are on the starting
team of the saints and that your joy and happiness will
go on eternally. May your beautiful and gentle souls rest
in peace forever and may you smile down kindly and support
all your loved ones that you have left behind , give them
strength and bring them hope.

I know there are very important games on this week-end.
I ma not going to try and preview them they pale into insignificance
right now. Take the time instead of reading the previews,
to pay your own little tribute to offer your own little
prayer for the girls.

Fr. Liam Kelleher PRO 087-8516984

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