Belfast Telegraph

Smiling character who energised everyone around him

By Declan Bogue

In comparison to other GAA units, Fermanagh hurling is a tiny village.

Therefore, all the citizens of that village are treasured with an intensity, something that you learn since Friday night's accident that claimed the life of Shane Mulholland.

We belong to the same club, Lisbellaw St Patrick's, and Shane was part of the club's Ulster Intermediate Championship triumph a couple of years back.

More importantly, he was the sort of effervescent, ever-smiling character that energises everyone around him and livens up a dressing room.

His team-mates will struggle to get over this, and he will be missed for any number of reasons.

Hailing from Loughgiel, Shane had an unbelievable passion for hurling and when he came to live in Fermanagh, following his then girlfriend and later wife Vanessa, he threw everything in with his new club.

When one of his county-playing colleagues, Eoin Morrissey, moved on from a coaching development post with Cavan County Board, Shane put himself forward for the role and landed his dream job of coaching youngsters.

Although he did it for a living, it didn't prevent him from spending his evenings doing it in a voluntary capacity for Lisbellaw with their under-14 and under-16 teams.

Add in his own playing commitments with club and county, then you soon see how the man lived the hurling life.

Most tragically, he will be an irreplaceable loss to his wife and child, and his absence will also be felt for a long time across Antrim, Fermanagh and Cavan.

Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam.

Belfast Telegraph


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