Sunday 22 April 2018

Diarmaid Ferriter: TV captures moments but for 50 years RTE has captivated minds

Diarmaid Ferriter

ON THE night of July 21, 1969, my mother was driven to the Coombe hospital in Dublin to give birth to her first child. Her abiding memory of the journey is the extent of the flickering lights in most houses she passed, as it was the night a major television event was unfolding -- the landing of Neil Armstrong on the moon.

In reflecting on 50 years of RTE television being celebrated this New Year's Eve, most people of that generation will have their own special memories of television's impact and presence.

Those born after the service had been firmly established, myself included, will have other, more recent memories. My own is of being woken up as a 12-year-old by my father very early in the morning as John Treacy was on the cusp of winning a silver medal in the marathon at the Los Angeles Olympics in 1984.

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