Carey, Kieran

June 09, 2007
The late Kieran Carey One of the great players of all time. In plain and simple terms, John Doyle described his friend and team mate Kieran Carey, Kennedy Park, Roscrea, formerly of Rock Forest, Knock, who passed to his eternal reward, aged 74. There is none better qualified to adjudicate on the ability of Kieran Carey as a hurler. Together they helped Tipperary win five All-Ireland senior hurling titles between 1958 and 1965 and when Mickey "Rattler" Byrne retired in '59, Doyle dropped back from half back to wear the number two shirt and thus was formed the famed "Hells Kitchen" full back line for Tipperary, with Doyles, Holycross Clubmate, Michael Maher and his long time friend Kieran Carey. They were a formidable trio, admired or feared, depending on where you came from, but everywhere acknowledged as a combination which became the stuff of legends. Winner of eight senior all-Irelands, John Doyle said that Kieran Carey never got the recognition he deserved. The Holycross man went on to represent Tipperary at Central Council level while Michael Mahar became chairman of the county board, later the Munster Council, and was a nominee for President of the association. Carey opted for a lower profile but he enjoyed the respect and admiration of his peers, and in John Doyle's words, he was "a man among men". John Doyle said that with Kieran Carey's death he had lost a great friend and companion and he extended his sympathy to his wife Nancy, and sons, who have suffered a huge loss. The Holycross man recalled their last "outing" together when they were guests of the New York Tipperary Association before Christmas, adding that Kieran was the life and soul of the party. Kieran Carey came to prominence in 1958 at left corner back on the Tipperary team which beat Galway in the All-Ireland. He was a key figure in the all-conquering Tipperary team of the sixties which won All-Irelands in 61 and 62, 64 and 65, and during his career he won 7 Munster medals, 5 Railway Cups with Munster and 5 Oireachtas medals. He joined Roscrea hurling club from Knock and won three county senior championships with them, going on to win two Munster club medals and then in 71, an All-Ireland club title. In 71, he was a selector with the tipperary team that won the senior All-Ireland and at the time of his death he was president of Knock GAA club. Never giving less than his best in all his endeavours, he was modest about his achievements, and never sought public acclaim. Yet he was held in the highest esteem and this was clearly seen in the huge turnout of hurling people from far and wide who attended the removal of his remains to St.Cronan's in Roscrea and his interment following Requiem Mass there. His coffin was draped with club and county colours and various strands of GAA were represented in the Guard of Honour which flanked the hearse carrying his remains. His interment was in Knock Cemetery. It was a fitting farewell to a man who had worn the Blue and gold with distinction and pride. Sincere sympathy is extended to his wife Nancy, sons Niall, Cathal, Ciaran, Colman, Michael, and Phelim; his brothers Mick, Sean and Lua, his sister, Nora and a wide circle of relatives and friends. Courtesy of the Tipperary Star 9 June 2007 The Late Kieran Carey An air of sadness engulfed the hurling fields of Ireland when the news broke last week of the passing of a Roscrea and Tipperary legend. Kieran Carey was without doubt one of the most decorated hurlers ever in the history of the great game and his passing will leave a deep void in the hearts of family, friends and hurling supporters throughout the land. A gold watch tournament game against Toomevara, where Kieran played at centre back and came up against Phil Shanahan is cited as the game where Kieran announced himself to the hurling world. From there he went on to win a staggering amount of honours that included five All-Ireland Senior Championship medals, five Railway Cup medals, one Club All Ireland medal, one Munster Club medal, five National Hurling League medals, four County Final medals, (Kieran also won a Laois County Final medal with Kyle) six North Tipperary Championship medals, five Oireachtas medals, seven senior Munster Championship medals, one North Tipperary minor Championship medal, and a whole host of individual honours including his "Hall of Fame Award" in the millennium year. Medals aside, Kieran will probably be remembered for his role in arguably hurling's greatest and certainly Tipperary's most famous ever back line with his compatriots John Doyle and Mick Maher. The annals of hurling folklore will forever refer to the line as "Hell's Kitchen". Kieran of course played against many of hurling's greats which included Christy Ring (Cork) Paddy Barry (Cork), Hopper McGrath (Wexford) Jimmy Smyth (Clare) Tim Flood (Wexford) and Podge Kehoe of (Wexford). At club level Kieran won a Laois Senior Hurling Championship medal in 1951 (played in 1952) with Kyle. The victory was Kierans first Senior Hurling Championship success, made all the sweeter by the fact that in that team Kieran played alongside his brother's Mick and Tommy. Because of work commitments Kieran moved from his native Knock to Roscrea in the early 1950's and it wasn't long before he found himself wearing the famous red and white. Kieran was a member of the Roscrea team that won the Club's first ever County Final in 1968 and went on to win the first ever All-Ireland Club Championship in 1971. A huge crowd turned out to pay their respects at Kieran's funeral on Friday last and Guards of Honour were provided of the Club and former team mates of Kieran. Dignitaries included Munster Council Representatives, County Board and North Board officials, and a host of players from past and present including Fr Tommy Murphy, Eddie Kehir, Mick Roache, DJ Carey. A powerful graveside oration was made by Tipperary County Board Chairman, John Costigan who said he was humbled and extremely honoured to have the privilege to say a few words in appreciation of Kieran. Mr Costigan said that Kieran was a larger than life Character who despite his prowess with the Caman never courted the limelight. He said Kieran will forever be remembered in the history of Tipperary hurling for being part of that unyielding inside defence which he formed with the uncompromising Mick Maher and the fearless and flamboyant John Doyle that played such a part in the success story that was Tipperary hurling between 1958 and 1965 during which they collected five senior All-Ireland titles. The Chairman reflected on how as a member of the famous Roscrea Club Kieran Carey came to the notice of the Tipperary senior hurling selectors in 1958 and was selected as full back for the first round of the Munster Senior Hurling Championship against LImerick in the old athletic grounds in Cork in the absence of the injured Michael Maher. Kieran created a very favourable impression in that first round and when the team was announced to play Cork in that years Munster semi-final, KIeran was selected and never looked back until his retirement from inter-county hurling in 1967. The Chairman of the County Board reflected on ho apart from National prominence attained by Carey in the blue and gold, Kieran will be fondly remembered in Roscrea GAA circles for his leadership and solidarity in Roscrea's first county final victory in 1968 when arch rivals Thurles Sarsfields were the victims. Kieran added further County medals to his vast repertoire of trophies with County Final victories in 1969 and 1970 and he was extremely proud of that fact that he was on the Roscrea team that won the first ever All-Ireland Club title in 1971 over St Rynagh's of Banagher. Kieran Carey was without a doubt a legendary character whose time on this earth will be reflected upon for a long time to come. Away from the playing fields he enjoyed nothing more than great social occasions with his family and friends. His appetite for life was unquestionable and only last December he made the long trip to New York to share in a memorable occasion to mark Brendan Maher's contribution to hurling. The trip was one of many that Kieran has made to New York over the years. One can be sure that Kieran's death will have rocked the Irish Community in the big apple to its very bone's, such was his popularity on that side of the Atlantic. Kieran Carey was a great competitor, a wonderful friend and a fantastic family man who will never be forgotten Kieran is survived by his wife Nancy, his sons Niall, Cathal, Colman, Ciaran, Michael and Phelim, his relatives, grandchildren, extended family, many many friends and legions of hurling supporters across the world. We leave the final words of Kieran's passing to John Costigan who reflected at the graveside of a hurling legend in the peaceful surrounds of Knock cemetery on Friday afternoon last...... "And today when the final whistle for Kieran has blown, and he stands at last at God's final throne, may the great referee when he calls his name, say, you played like a man, you played the game" And as we say farewell to Kieran Carey , I pray that the green sod of his beloved Knock rest lightly on brave and noble remains." Ar dheis De go raibh a anam. Courtesy of the Tipperary Star 9 June 2007


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