Life-size statue of legend Paidi to be unveiled outside home
A LIFE-SIZE bronze replica of iconic Kerry football legend Paidi O Se is to be erected outside his home in the Dingle Peninsula next year.
O Se died suddenly in December 2012, aged 57, from heart complications. But now he is to be remembered with this special monument, which is to be unveiled in May 2015, on what would have been his 60th birthday.
Taoiseach Enda Kenny made the announcement at the launch of the 25th annual Gaelic football festival, which the legendary Kerry half-back started a quarter of a century ago.
O Se persuaded teams from various parts of Ireland and abroad to play in the unique weekend competition, which is hosted in local football grounds in the Dingle area.
Speaking at the launch of this year's event, his son Padraig Og said the festival "has grown beyond our dad's wildest dreams''.
"We are delighted it continues to attract clubs from all over the world. It sends a positive message to young people about the benefits of an active and healthy lifestyle,'' he added.
This year over 1,300 footballers from Ireland, Europe and the USA, comprising over 40 men's and ladies' teams, will take part.
To mark its 25th anniversary, the four original senior men's club teams from the first tournament in 1989 will once again compete – the An Gaeltacht and Dingle clubs from West Kerry, Cork's Ballincollig and Galway's An Cheathru Rua.
The centrepiece of the festivities will be the Paidi O Se pub and matches will be played on February 21-23. A photographic exhibition will also feature the work of Inpho Photography, which is also celebrating 25 years in business.
The exhibit, 'Irish Sports Stars Through The Years' will be launched by another Kerry GAA legend, Mick O' Dwyer, on February 23, in the Paidi O Se pub where it will remain for two months.