The last of the famous Lucey brothers of Caragh Lake, who helped Kerry dominate the inter-county football scene through much of the 1960s, has passed away, aged 82, at his home in Glenflesk.
Noel Lucey died peacefully, following a short illness, surrounded by his family on Monday morning, much to the sadness of sports fans of the county who remembered his exploits for Kerry, Laune Rangers and Mid Kerry so very well.
He was the holder of an All-Ireland Senior Football medal from the famous showdown with Roscommon in 1962, when Kerry beat the Connacht side 1-12 to 1-6; the Kerry goal being the fastest ever scored (by Garry MacMahon after just 34 seconds' play) in an All-Ireland final - until a new record was set in 2020.
Noel was the last of the revered siblings, having been predeceased by Paul, Vincent, Brendan and brother Jimmy - who played midfield alongside Mick O'Connell in the '62 final.
The Caragh Lake man played for Laune Rangers and Mid Kerry for many years and won the Junior Championship with the London team in 1966, alongside three other Kerry players.
He proved his athleticism far beyond the GAA pitch, too, winning many awards in athletics, both nationally and with the Air Corps of the Irish Army - excelling in particular in the long jump and sprint.
Mr Lucey's passing, meanwhile, came just months after the death, following illness, of his beloved daughter and Killarney hotelier Linda Eviston in a tragedy that broke his heart.
Linda was one of his five daughters along with Karen, Deirdre, Sandra and Áine, whom he raised single-handedly following the death of his wife and Glenflesk native Mary (née Shine) when their eldest was just 12 years of age.
The determination he showed on the pitch and track in his own sporting career would transfer to the girls as, together, they pursued a love of athletics that saw each win All-Ireland medals across a variety of track-and-field events, with two of the girls even going on to represent Ireland in athletics.
Stone mad about every kind of sport, Noel was never more proud than when bringing his girls across the country to compete in national athletics championships and Community Games meetings.
"He was the ultimate sports fan," nephew Niall Lucey told The Kerryman this week.
"He loved sports of all kinds and had been really looking forward to the Olympics starting. He would have watched all of it.
"He was fiercely proud of his girls' achievements in sports, and his devotion to them showed just how gentle he was off the pitch for all his reputation as a hard man on it," Niall added.