Cummins, Michael

Michael's passing on January 21, just a few weeks shy of his 101st birthday, severed the last remaining link with the Mullingar hurling team that won the 1935 senior championship. The Bishopgate Street resident won a second senior championship medal with Mullingar in 1944. Clubs representing the town of Mullingar in hurling have only won four senior titles and it's extraordinary to think that Michael was involved in two of those successes.

The Mullingar hurling club chairman at the time was Brother Hogan from St. Mary's CBS who was a sibling of Tipperary footballer Michael Hogan, who was shot dead on Bloody Sundayand after whom the Hogan Stand in Croke Park is named. Michael Cummins later played for Clonkill with whom he won a league medal. 

A devout Catholic, Michael was a very popular and highly respected personality in Mullingar throughout his long life. He was involved in the Legion of Mary for over half a century and gave many years of service at Mullingar Cathedral as a steward and collector. An accountant by profession, he had a great love of the Irish language and after three years in UCG (now NUIG) was described by the famous writer Padraig O Conaire as the best person to speak Irish outside native Gaeltacht speakers.

Speaking at his funeral Mass, Fr Paul Crosbie CC said: "Michael was quite simply an extraordinary person and those of us who were fortunate enough to have known him and respected him, were profoundly blessed to have been graced by his presence here among us. We have been hearing a lot about 1916, but it's hard to imagine that Michael was born the year before the Easter Rising.

"He was a stylish person; always dressed immaculately, sharp jacket, pocket watch and the elegant brown hat. He added a touch of class to our street. When you walked Bishopgate Street and saw Michael, it was as if you were in Milan or Paris.

"He was quite simply a true gentleman whose politeness and courtesy were equalled only by his modesty and humility."

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