Members of the Ratty Family together with O'Mahonys and Ballinlough clubs present a cheque for Eu1,200 euro to Gerry Cully, Head of promotions and Fundraising for Our Lady's Hospital for sick children Crumlin
THE LATE RAYMOND RATTY REMEMBERED IN FITTING STYLE
n February last, a charity night involving members of the Ballinlough and Navan O'Mahony's clubs, was staged in Brews Hill to commemorate the late Raymond Ratty with all proceeds going to Our Lady's Hospital for Sick Children, Crumlin. The night began with a juvenile match, where Meath players Stephen Bray, Alan Forde, Cormac McGuiness and Kevin Reilly, joined the game with the youngsters to contribute to make it a memorable occasion for all who took part. Ironically, the first score of the night was a point for Ballinlough by Raymond's nephew Harry Ryan. The game also featured the first appearance in the red and white jersey by Harry's younger brother, Ciaran. Following the final whistle, Stephen and Kevin presented commemorative plaques and medals to each team. To conclude the action on the night, the older generation had its fling, as the ‘Golden Oldies’ from both clubs rolled back the years and took to the field. However, there were glimpses
of the old abilities on view, with some fine point scoring from long range, in particular for O'Mahony's from Colm Kane, and by Ballinlough's Francis Tunney and Ken Rothwell. Former O'Mahony's and Meath stars, Michael Downes and Finian Murtagh, along with current senior team manager, Davy Nelson, all well into their fifties now, displayed all the craftiness that comes with the many, many years of experience that they possess between them. Indeed, Murtagh was singled out for some heavy tackling by me Ballinlough defence, possibly due to his close connections with their local rivals, Drumbaragh Emmets. While for Ballinlough, Denis Gaughran made his debut at adult level at the tender age of 44, finally fulfilling the enormous potential he showed as an underage talent. With less then a minute remaining to play, the cry went out ‘next goal wins’. Some seven minutes later, following teak tough defending by the likes of the Reilly brothers, Brian and Alan, Brian Smith, ex Walterstown stars, (cousins of Raymond, who
guested for O'Mahony's), Seamus and Martin Lanney who made a spectacular goal-line clearance, Gary McDonnell, Seamus Magee, Vinny Ryan and Liam Sherlock, not to mention a number of fine saves by both goalkeepers, Andy Smith (Ballinlough) and John Lynch (O'Mahony's), Ballinlough finally raised the green flag much to the relief of both teams. Refreshments were enjoyed in the clubhouse afterwards and many aching limbs were reported the following morning. A total of €1,200 was raised on the night and the cheque was presented by the Ratty family and members of O'Mahonys and Ballinlough clubs to Gerry Cully, Head of Promotions and Fundraising of Crumlin Childrens Hospital. The Ratty family would like to express their sincere appreciation to all those who took part in the games, or helped, in any way, to organise them, and especially to those who contributed so generously to the collection to help raise much needed funds for such a worthy cause.
Our team has produced the Meath annual, Royal County, since 1986 and the 2013 edition marks 27 years of covering all things GAA in Meath. R...