Henry Deane Cup 2014-09-11 21:08:00

The annual Henry Deane Cup game between Bantry Blues and Spa GAA club Killarney takes place this Saturday at 5pm in Wolfe Tone Park Bantry. Please support this game in memory of this GAA legend.The Late Henry Deane
Henry Deane passed from this life in the early hours of Wednesday April 7th, 2010. Even though we knew he was unwell, when word filtered through that Henry had passed away, the sense of loss and grief that permeated throughout the community was unimaginable.
Henry was an all-rounder first and foremost a husband and father, then a businessman and after that a sportsman with an uncompromising passion for the GAA and more particularly for Gaelic football.
Henry was a footballer of no mean ability, and a major part of the success that the Clann na nGael club enjoyed through the 70s and 80s. Henry's first taste of success was as part of the U14 team that brought the Tom Barry Cup to the Scorchers in 1971.
He was again successful in 1974 with the U18 side, in 1977 when he was part of the junior 2 team that clinched both league and championship honours and more particularly when he in that same year captained the U21 side to win the West Cork.
In 1981, Henry was part of the junior 1 team that won the West Cork before finally losing out in a county semi-final to Ballincollig. Henry also played with the Carbery divisional team in the 80s.
Henry never missed a training session, always first to arrive, with the boots tied around his neck, and last to leave. His commitment was total, and that continued onto the field of play, where he was never found wanting.
In his early years, he was a goalie of note, but he is known more for his excellence as a centrefield player, the position he made his own right up to the early 90s. On retiring from the field of play he continued his allegiance to Clann na nGael GAA as a trainer/selector with the underage teams.
In the mid 90s, Henry then living in Bantry for almost 10 years, became involved with the underage structure within Bantry Blues GAA. Here again his commitment was absolute and one of his proudest moments was 2009 when Ruairí, his son donned the red jersey for the Cork minors.
The numbers who attended the rosary, removal and funeral of our good friend Henry are testament to the popularity of the man. People from all walks of life turned up to pay their respects.
Henry would have been proud that Graham Canty, the Cork senior football captain, a man that Henry had coached at underage level with the Bantry Blues, was to give such a moving tribute to a packed church. He spoke of the influence that Henry had been, and how he would have travelled the country to support the county team, always with his family by his side.
The singing of Drimoleague by Pat Mullins as the coffin was carried from the church, brought tears to the eyes of many a Scorcher.
The procession and the guard of honour provided by the Clann na nGael and Bantry Blues GAA clubs, and particularly the underage structure of the Bantry Blues, was extraordinary, showing the true affection that was there for Henry.
The Clann na nGael Club has lost a true supporter, but our loss is nothing compared to that of his family.
To Henry's beloved wife Mary, his children, Kenneth, Lorna, Sarah, Ruairí and Henry junior, his mother Mary, sisters Annie and Margaret, brothers Jimmy, John and Willie, we will never forget our dear friend Henry Deane; we extend our deepest sympathies to you.

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