seamus dubhghaill

Promoting Irish Culture and History from Little Rock, Arkansas, USA


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Body of Jack Lynch Moved to Church of St. Paul of the Cross

On October 21, 1999, President Mary McAleese leads mourners at the removal of the body of former Taoiseach and Fianna Fáil leader, Jack Lynch, from Dublin’s Royal Hospital, where he had died the previous day, to the Church of St. Paul of the Cross, Mount Argus.

Jack Lynch, in full John Mary Lynch, is born on August 15, 1917, in Cork, County Cork. He serves as Taoiseach of Ireland from 1966 to 1973 and from 1977 to 1979.

Lynch studies law and enters the civil service with the Department of Justice in 1936. He eventually decides on a legal career, is called to the bar in 1945, resigns from the civil service, and practices on the Cork circuit. He already enjoys a national reputation as a sports hero as he had won five All-Ireland medals as a Cork hurler and another as a footballer.

Lynch joins Fianna Fáil and wins a seat in Dáil Éireann, the lower house of the Oireachtas, in 1948. He works closely with Éamon de Valera in opposition (1948–51), and de Valera appoints him a Parliamentary Secretary in 1951–1954, Minister for the Gaeltacht in 1957, and Minister for Education in 1957–1959. When Seán Lemass succeeds de Valera as Taoiseach in 1959, he makes Lynch Minister for Industry and Commerce and in 1965–1966 Minister for Finance.

Lemass’s retirement in 1966 causes an internal party conflict over the succession that leads to Lynch’s selection as a compromise candidate, a position he reluctantly accepts. In November 1966 he becomes leader of Fianna Fáil and Taoiseach. In June 1969 he becomes the only Fianna Fáil leader other than de Valera to win an overall majority in a general election.

In 1969–1973 Lynch plays an important role when civil unrest leads to the collapse of the government of Northern Ireland and poses a threat to the stability of the Irish state. He fires two cabinet ministers who are suspected of involvement in smuggling arms to the Provisional Irish Republican Army (IRA). He also creates a consensus in Irish party politics on a policy of conciliation and cooperation with the British government in seeking a solution to the Northern Ireland problem based on establishing power-sharing between the unionist majority and the Roman Catholic minority.

In 1972 Lynch wins an 83% majority in a referendum on Ireland’s entry into the European Economic Community and, on January 1, 1973, Ireland becomes a member. Although he is defeated in the 1973 Irish general election, he again demonstrates his remarkable popularity at the polls in 1977 when Fianna Fáil wins their largest and their last overall majority. In December 1979, however, discouraged by challenges to his authority from party colleagues, he resigns his leadership and soon after retires from politics. He serves on a number of corporate boards after his retirement.

Lynch dies in the Royal Hospital, Donnybrook, Dublin on October 20, 1999 at the age of 82. He is honoured with a state funeral which is attended by the President Mary McAleese, Taoiseach Bertie Ahern, former Taoisigh John Bruton, Albert Reynolds and Charles Haughey, and various political persons from all parties. The coffin is then flown from Dublin to Cork where a procession through the streets of the city draw some of the biggest crowds in the city’s history. Following the Requiem Mass celebrated in his home parish of the Cathedral of St. Mary and St. Anne, his friend and political ally, Desmond O’Malley, delivers the graveside oration, paying tribute to Lynch’s sense of decency. He is buried in St. Finbarr’s Cemetery, Cork.


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Death of Hunger Striker Kevin Lynch

kevin-lynchKevin Lynch, Irish republican hunger striker and member of the Irish National Liberation Army (INLA), dies on August 1, 1981 at Maze Prison in County Down, Northern Ireland following 71 days on hunger strike.

Lynch is born on May 25, 1956 in Park near Dungiven, County Londonderry, Northern Ireland, the youngest in a family of eight children born to Paddy and Bridie Lynch. His older brother, Frank, is an amateur boxer and he also participates in the sport as well as Gaelic football and hurling. He is a member of the winning Dungiven GAC team which wins the Féile na nGael Division 3 in Thurles, County Tipperary in 1971. In 1972 he captains the Derry Hurling team to an Under-16 All-Ireland title at Croke Park in Dublin by defeating the Armagh GAA club.

Lynch stands as a Anti H-Block candidate in the Waterford constituency during the June 1981 general election in the South and polls extremely well despite missing out on election.

Lynch is tried, convicted and sentenced to ten years for conspiracy to obtain arms, taking part in a punishment shooting and conspiring to take arms from the security forces. He is sent to the Maze Prison in County Down in December 1977. He becomes involved with the blanket protest and joins the 1981 hunger strike at the Maze on May 23, 1981. He dies at Maze Prison 71 days later on August 1, 1981.

The Dungiven hurling team is renamed Kevin Lynch’s Hurling Club in his honour following his death.


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Birth of Kevin Lynch, Irish Republican Hunger Striker

kevin-lynchKevin Lynch, Irish republican hunger striker and member of the Irish National Liberation Army (INLA), is born on May 25, 1956 in Park near Dungiven, County Londonderry, Northern Ireland.

Lynch is the youngest in a family of eight children born to Paddy and Bridie Lynch. His older brother, Frank, is an amateur boxer and he also participates in the sport as well as Gaelic football and hurling. He is a member of the winning Dungiven GAC team which wins the Féile na nGael Division 3 in Thurles, County Tipperary in 1971. In 1972 he captains the Derry Hurling team to an Under-16 All-Ireland title at Croke Park in Dublin by defeating the Armagh GAA club.

Lynch is tried, convicted and sentenced to ten years for stealing shotguns, taking part in a punishment shooting and conspiring to take arms from the security forces. He is sent to the Maze Prison in County Down, Northern Ireland in December 1977. He becomes involved with the blanket protest and joins the 1981 hunger strike at the Maze on May 23, 1981. Kevin Lynch dies at Maze Prison 71 days later on August 1, 1981.

The Dungiven hurling team is renamed Kevin Lynch’s Hurling Club in his honour after his death.


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Birth of Tipperary Hurling Legend John Doyle

john-doyleJohn Doyle, Irish sportsperson and politician, hailed as one of the best defenders in hurling and his county’s most iconic player upon his death, is born in Holycross, County Tipperary, on February 12, 1930.

Doyle first excels at hurling while at school in Thurles CBS. Regarded as too good for CBS Primary School team, he is drafted into the secondary school’s under-15 Croke Cup team in 1942. Doyle plays at wing-forward as Thurles CBS wins the championship that year.

Doyle arrives on the inter-county scene at the age of sixteen when he first links up with the Tipperary minor team. He makes his senior debut in the 1947-48 National League. A 5-6 to 4-2 defeat of Cork in the provincial decider gives him his first Munster medal. Tipperary retains their provincial crown in 1947, with Doyle collecting a second Munster medal following a 2-4 to 1-2 defeat of Waterford. Doyle goes on to play a key role for Tipperary during a hugely successful era for the team, winning eight All-Ireland medals, ten Munster medals, and ten National Hurling League medals.

On June 26, 1949, Doyle makes his senior championship debut in a Munster quarter-final replay against Cork. As a member of the Munster inter-provincial team for fifteen years, Doyle wins six Railway Cup medals. At club level he wins three championship medals with Holycross-Ballycahill.

After surrendering their provincial crown in 1966, Tipperary bounces back the following year, with Doyle winning a record tenth Munster medal following a 4-12 to 2-6 defeat of Clare. On September 3, 1967, Tipperary faces Kilkenny in the All-Ireland decider, a game which presents Doyle win the opportunity of making history by winning a record-breaking ninth All-Ireland medal. Despite leading at halftime 2-6 to 1-3, Kilkenny goalkeeper Ollie Walsh makes a series of spectacular saves in the second half and Kilkenny is victorious 3-8 to 2-7 and lays to rest a bogey that Tipperary has had over the team since 1922. The defeat brings the curtain down on Doyle’s inter-county career.

For almost fifty years Doyle, together with Christy Ring, hold a unique record as the only players to win eight All-Ireland medals on the field of play. This record is subsequently surpassed by Henry Shefflin on September 30, 2012. His record of National League medals has yet to be equalled. Throughout his career, Doyle makes 54 championship appearances, a Tipperary record which stands until August 9, 2009 when it is surpassed by Brendan Cummins.

In retirement from inter-county hurling, Doyle continues to work on his farm in Holycross. In later years he enters politics. He stands unsuccessfully as a Fianna Fáil candidate at the 1969 general election for the Tipperary North constituency, but is subsequently elected to Seanad Éireann on the Agricultural Panel. He serves until 1973 when he loses his seat.

Doyle is widely regarded as one of the greatest hurlers in the history of the game. During his playing days he wins two Cú Chulainn awards, and is named Texaco Hurler of the Year in 1964. He is repeatedly voted onto teams made up of the sport’s greats, including as left corner-back on the Hurling Team of the Century in 1984 and the Hurling Team of the Millennium in 2000.

John Doyle dies on December 29, 2010. Taoiseach Brian Cowen is among those who pay tribute saying “He was an immense hurler and an incredibly decent man, his love of the GAA was matched by his concern for his country and his own community, he was a Tipperary legend and a proud Irishman.” Doyle is buried at Holy Cross Abbey outside Thurles on December 31, 2010.