Vigil to take place for Tyrone hurler Damian Casey

by 24britishtvJune 19, 2022, 11 a.m. 16
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A vigil will be held tonight for Tyrone hurler Damian Casey following his tragic death in Spain.

he 29-year-old from Dungannon was attending a friend’s wedding when he died in an incident in a swimming pool on Friday.

Mr Casey played for Eoghan Ruadh GAA club and at inter-county level for the Tyrone senior hurling team.

The Kevin Bell Repatriation Trust is helping to organise for his body to be returned home after a post-mortem takes place this weekend.

His heartbroken family have asked those wishing to show their support at the club tonight to wear a GAA jersey.

Mr Casey scored in every game he played for the Red Hands since 2012, putting 14 points on the board in last month’s Nicky Rackard Cup final victory over Roscommon at Croke Park.

Last night Tyrone manager Michael McShane paid an emotional tribute to a “magical hurler”.

“He represented Tyrone and was an unbelievable ambassador for them. But more than anything, Damian was an absolute gentleman to work with as a manager.”

He described Mr Casey as “one of life’s good guys” and said it was “a pleasure to be in his company”.

“He was so, so easy to manage. He always gives you everything that he can give you. He just had that ability to conjure something up out of nothing.

“A fabulous hurler, a fabulous leader, but more than anything, an absolute gentleman,” he said.

Mr Casey gave Tyrone-based journalist and broadcaster Paddy Hunter his last interview following the Nicky Rackard Cup victory, describing the win as “massive”.

“You always want to better yourself and play at as high a level as you can… it’s massive for the whole county.”

In a tribute last night, Mr Hunter said it was “apt” that the popular hurler’s final game for Tyrone “was one of his greatest achievements as a player”.

“He scored 0-14 in a 1-27 to 0-19 win over Roscommon in the Nicky Rackard cup final. I will remember the joy on his face after the game.”

He said Mr Casey “had nothing to prove” and was “the finest hurler of all time in Tyrone and that’s no exaggeration”.

“He was one of the most generous sportsmen of his time, nothing was a hindrance, no question or query too insignificant,” said Mr Hunter.

“I am glad I could call him a friend. It’s heartbreaking and, while we have lost a genius with the hurl, his family have lost a precious son.

“We all have been blessed by his greatness.”

“Someone who brought honour, delight and simple, straightforward gladness to our whole county, and far beyond, is gone and it’s so hard to take in.

“Our deepest sympathy goes to them, and our focus must now be on providing the support and comfort that will be so badly needed.

“Damian Casey was a special gift to Tyrone and to hurling. We were the richer for his presence and are the poorer for his passing,” he said.

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