Monday 5 December 2016

Reid leaves lasting legacy at Garryowen

Published 12/01/2016 | 02:30

Former Irish Rugby International and Grand Slam Winner Paddy Reid died aged 91 Photo: Don Moloney/Press 22
Former Irish Rugby International and Grand Slam Winner Paddy Reid died aged 91 Photo: Don Moloney/Press 22

On Friday last, Garryowen, Munster and Irish rugby lost one of its true greats when Paddy Reid, one of the last surviving members of the 1948 Grand Slam-winning side, moved to that great rugby stadium in the sky.

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Paddy won four caps before switching to rugby league in the North of England. Yet even in his time away he remained a true light blue. I remember in my time in Dooradoyle for the best part of a decade Paddy and Tommy O'Brien would occupy the same place behind the fence for every match.

And boy was he opinionated. He and I had our moments and I'll not pretend otherwise, but when it came to playing the game the right way and in teaching running skills at the expense of kicking, the Grand Slam-winning legend was way ahead of his time. My respect for him was total and he knew it.

The multi-talented sportsman was central to establishing rugby in St Clement's close to his beloved Swanson Terrace on O'Connell Avenue. He leaves a lasting legacy at Garryowen Football Club but will be missed most of all in the bosom of his family and specifically by wife Cecil, daughters Deirdre (Whelan) and Cecil (Clarke) as well as son Pat in London and the extended family.

Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam dílis.

Irish Independent

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