It was Castleisland’s turn on Wednesday to applaud and welcome the Sam Maguire Cup on its lap of honour throughout the county and Kerry associations in various parts of the world.
Desmonds GAA Club members accompanied the famous trophy and members of the all conquering ladies club brought their considerable haul of silverware along.
Club official, Colm Kirwan was on the tour and he sent the following account of Sam’s encounters along the way:
When Jimmy O Connell, chairman of Desmonds GAA Club entered the hall in Scoil Ide Curranes on Tuesday, holding the Sam Maguire cup aloft, there was a spontaneous eruption of cheering and clapping. The sense of celebration and joy was greatly increased by the presence of five of the Desmonds Ladies team which had such a hugely successful season in 2014. They brought with them the All Ireland, Munster and county Intermediate championship cups as well as those of the Kerry Senior championship and league. The excitement wasn’t confined to the young scholars as staff and parents joined in the spirit of the occasion and it was lovely to see Terence McQuinn, a Desmonds star in his day and a former principal of the school in attendance.
The reception in Scoil Mhuire gan Smal was no less enthuastic where the visiting party and the cups were given a rousing reception. Eager young hands reached out to touch or hold the cups and to have the mandatory photo taken with Stephanie and Andrea Murphy, Rachael Cronin, Eilish Lynch and Kayla O Connor who represented the ladies team. . Desmonds appreciate the effort made by the staff in all the schools for organising the event in such a professional manner.
The Ladies then travelled to Kilmurry NS and Sam went to the Castleisland Day Care Centre. It made all the effort so worthwhile to see such a large, vibrant, youthful group of our senior citizens in such good form. James Lyons senior was a proud man to see his grandson James hold the cup aloft. It was wonderful to see the centre so richly and tastefully decorated for the occasion. Everyone was given the opportunity to hold and be photographed with Sam and they look forward to giving the Ladies team an equally warm reception in the future.
The day concluded in Scoil Aogain. Charlie Nelligan, who had accompanied the group during the morning, received a special welcome as he brought in the cup. One wag remarked that Charlie was treated like a ‘pop star’ as he autographed Kerry and club jerseys. The girls, some of them former pupils, received a special warm welcome from the staff and it was obvious from the warmth of the greeting from the pupils of today that they had found new heroes.
Sam and the ladies will return with a few week to visit the schools that were closed for the mid term break.