Poignant moment as All-Ireland winning captain's late brother remembered

May 20, 2024

Tyrone's Eoin McElholm celebrates against Kerry ©INPHO/Ben Brady

GAA president Jarlath Burns has praised the bravery shown by Tyrone U20 captain Michael Rafferty following a family tragedy.

Rafferty led the Red Hands to All-Ireland glory in Portlaoise yesterday, just 19 months after his older brother John died in a road crash on the notorious A5 between Ballygawley and Omagh.

Before handing over the Clarke Cup, Burns said: "There is an empty seat today in O’Moore Park that should be taken up by his brother John.

"But unfortunately, the A5, which has been a graveyard to Gaels from Tyrone and beyond, has claimed another life. It is testimony to your resilience that you are here today, leading this team out.

"And I also pay tribute to the Gaels of Tyrone for what you have done to turn the A5 dream into a reality.”

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