In Remembrance – Máire Bean Uí hAdhmaill

 

ON MONDAY 27th August 2018,  the death occurred in Armagh of Máire Bean Uí hAdhmaill who held a distinctive place in the Ulster Gaelic games’ roll of honour.

While Kevin Mussen is remembered principally as the first captain to carry the Sam Maguire Cup across the border, an All-Ireland senior inter-county title had been won 15 years earlier by the Antrim camogie team.

Máire Ní Ghormáin was the Antrim captain who first got her hands on the O’Duffy Cup in the autumn of 1945 after the Saffrons travelled to Cappaquin for the final against Waterford.

Antrim won by 5-2 to 3-2 with their centre-half back and captain scoring a point from play and that started a run of three successive titles for Antrim, a feat that certainly raised the profile of the game in Ulster.

Máire, a member of the St Teresa’s club, had picked up four successive county titles 1942-6, and as a consequence her club had the honour of nominating the county captain.

She had played midfield on the 1944 Antrim team that had defeated Galway at the Galway Sports Field to become the first Ulster side to play in the All-Ireland final, which – despite the concerns expressed by Dublin in advance – was played in Corrigan Park and attracted a gate of £111 in a city that was still wary of German bombing raids.

Dublin easily won the final for their third successive title, but Antrim took over for the next three seasons, although Máire was not part of the 1946 and 1947 teams. She had married Padraig Ó hAdhmaill and subsequently moved to Armagh where she raised a family.

The O’Gorman name however remained in Antrim teams with younger sister Deirdre featuring in four All-Ireland senior finals during the 1950s including the 1956 winning side. Indeed their father Eddie had played for Antrim in the 1912 All-Ireland football final.

Máire Bean Uí hAdhmaill’s funeral took place on Thursday to St Malachy’s Church in Armagh and afterwards she was interred in St Patrick’s Cemetery.

Ar dheis lámh Dé go raibh sí.

Maire is pictured above: blonde haired girl 4th from right back row between Kathleen Rainey and Cella Quinn

This photo was taken in Cappoquin by photographer W.H. Doyle