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Nochtadh Oifigiúil Leacht Pháidí Uí Shé 2015-05-17 21:33:00

Nochtadh Oifigiúil Leacht Pháidí Uí Shé
16/5/15

As Michéal Ó Muircheartaigh said, it was a day mixed with pride and sadness for Páidí Ó Sé's family. The unveiling of Paídí’s sculpture by Mick O'Dwyer was a momentous day that befitted the famous and fantastic Kerry Footballer that Páidí was.

The big attendance that represented all facets of his life was befitting of the man himself: Family, friends, neighbours, GAA stars, Kerry GAA supporters, musicians, singers ,the media and politicians.

Michéal Ó Muircheartaigh opened the proceedings and regaled the big attendance at Árd a Bhóthair with stories of Páidí and said that he was in no doubt that Páidí had arranged the wonderful weather from above. He added that Páidí would be so proud to have his native Ventry Band entertaining the big attendance. The Life size sculpture of the Great Kerry Gael was unveiled on what would have been his 60th birthday.

The most intimate speech of the day was given in his native Irish by Sean Ó Catháin, Páidí's neighbour, friend and school mate. Seán, the Chairman of the hard working committee that worked tirelessly for the past two years to ensure he would live on in his native Parish of Ventry. Sean said that the first competitive match Páidí played was at the back of his house on Ventry beach in 1963 when he was 8 years of age:. It was an 11 a side match and Páidí's team was his school mates from Cill Mhic a Domhnaigh. They all turned up in their usual everyday clothes and boots to be met by Paidí wearing green and gold socks, White Togs and a No 5 Kerry jersey. He was followed closely by his mother Beatrice as he had procured his brother Tom's All Ireland Minor Jersey!

Robert Frost, the Chairman of The Munster Council mentioned Páidí's love of rural Ireland and all he did to preserve it. Páidí innovative Páidí Ó Sé Tournament that brought crowds to his native Ventry in February each year was a great example of his thinking.

Patrick O'Sullivan Chairman of Coiste Chontae Chiarraí spoke about Paidís love of his family and his great love and devotion to Kerry Football. He praised Páidí as a great footballer, former All Ireland winning Captain and manager of Kerry Teams that brought his beloved Sam Maguire back to the Kingdom and to Árd a Bhóthair. He said Páidí was a great motivator and he was a true leader that defined the spirit that is the Green and Gold of Kerry.

Mick O'Dwyer spoke of Páidí's gift as a footballer, his achievements and his uniqueness as a person. Micko, who managed Paidí to win 8 All Ireland medals, then unveiled the life size sculptor of Páidí.

The sculpture, by Seamus Connolly, was exceptionally well received by everyone. All evening and beyond the fading light one could still see the flashes from the cameras as Páidí loyal followers stood posing with him.

Ní bheidh a leitheid arís ann. Ciarraí Abú!

The explanation to go with the sculpture by Séamus Connolly.
"Kerry Supporters gloried in his headlong dashes out of defence...the ball clutched to his chest, before he would bounce it high off the sod with his left hand to gather momentum for the charge that would take him into the open spaces"