ALTHOUGH just eight people turned up at the annual general meeting at the weekend, those spearheading a proud and ambitious Killarney-based hurling club are determined to continue their work, build on past successes and carve out a successful future.
St Pat’s East Kerry Hurling Club was founded 37 years ago on the initiative of then East Kerry Board Chairman and later GAA President Seán Kelly.
On a dark November night in 1982 he invited interested parties to attend a meeting in the Park Place Hotel – then a landmark building on High Street – and the attendance included Killarney Legion stalwart Pa Doyle, Brother Justin Kelly from the Presentation Monastery, former Kerry footballers Johnny Culloty and Derry Crowley, then East Kerry Board Secretary Con Carroll and Killarney GAA activists Gerald Landers, Tadhgie Fleming, Joe Doherty, Tom Holohan and Liam McGuire.
Playing under the St Patrick’s East Kerry banner, the club went on to resister a number of successes on the field of play, winning Division 2 of the Kerry Hurling League in 1985, the Kerry Junior Championship on four occasions and the Intermediate Championship twice.
Although players can be difficult to attract in an area not known as a hurling stronghold, the club has managed to continue its fixtures schedule and to be as competitive as possible and the eight people in attendance at the AGM in the former Ross Products plant on Upper Lewis Road, elected an executive to steer St Pat’s into 2019.
“Maybe we had the smallest crowd – eight of us – at an official GAA club AGM but we’re absolutely determined to keep hurling going in East Kerry,” founder member and MEP Seán Kelly insisted on Twitter.
At the AGM warm tributes were paid to the late Pat Delaney, a Kilkenny native who lived for many years in Killarney until his passing last June, who was one of the most dynamic officers of the club for several years. He will be succeeded in the position of vice president by his great friend Pat O’Brien from Fossa.
Paying tribute to Mr Delaney, a spokesman said: “Pat’s voice was very much missed from our meeting but his name was mentioned fondly on many occasions”.
The officers elected were:
President: Dan Kelleher
Vice Presidents: Tom Holohan, Pat O’Brien
Chairperson: Garry O’Halloran
Secretary: Pat Clifford
Treasurer: Michael Gleeson
Vice Chairperson: Martin Mulready
Players’ Representative: John Kelly
Senior Team Trainer: Paul Kiely
South Kerry Board delegate: Denis Coffey
East Kerry Hurling Officer: Garry O’Halloran
PRO: Martin Mulready.
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