Glin Gaa

est Board Awards

Congratulations to Jotty Culhane who was recently inducted into the West Board Hall of Fame. Jotty wore the black and white colours with distinction throughout the 60s, 70s and 80s. During those years he gave many notable performances and was part of the 1984 team which won the County Junior championship. He continues to be a great supporter of the club and this honour is very well deserved.

Glin GAA History

There has been a great response to the pieces on our club history so far. This week we look at an article from 1955 profiling Michéal Culhane, who started out with Glin in the early 1940s. He played inter-county football for Limerick, Dublin, Roscommon and New York during a distinguished career.

The old proverb says that ‘athletics run in families’ and that is very much the case with the Culhane brothers, Thomas and Michéal Culhane. Thomas played for Limerick and Munster on many occasions until his untimely death in 1940. His brother Michéal’s glory was gathered mainly away from his native county and he wore the county colours of Dublin and Roscommon with distinction. Michéal could claim descent from great athletic stock and was able to point to many relatives who had made their mark in the sporting world. There are over a hundred families of Culhanes scattered around the Glin parish and no less than a dozen members of this clan have hit the headlines in the ranks of athletics. Chief amongst them Maurice Culhane of the Mall, Glin, a leading member of the great Glin Emmets club committee, who with Dan Culhane of Killeaney and Tom ‘Murray’ Culhane were prominent players on this fine team at the turn of the century. The latter was also a useful sprinter and jumper.  We must also not omit to mention the fine work of Patrick Culhane, who has done much for Glin football in recent years.

Michéal’s opened his football career whilst still a schoolboy and at an early age was figuring with distinction on the local junior side as there was no minor team in existence at the time.  In 1946, Michéal joined the Gardaí, and during his period of training at the Depot turned out as a member of the Dublin club, the Geraldines. Before the season was out, his prowess on the football field became well known and it was no surprise to see him selected to play for the Dublin senior team, with whom he lined out during the 1946 season.

Early the following season, Michéal was transferred to Roscommon where he quickly joined the Tarmon club, then filling its role as one of the leading units of the Association in the great sheep raising county beside the Shannon. Success came quickly as Tarmon won the 1947 county championship. The Glin man figured prominently on all Roscommon teams from 1947 to 1950, while he was also an outstanding member of the Connacht Railway Cup sides during the same years. He helped Roscommon win the Connacht championship in 1947, before losing out to Cavan in the semi final. That Cavan team went on to beat Kerry in the famous Polo Grounds final in New York that year.  Toward the end of 1950, Michéal left for Pittsburgh, USA, where to this day, he is still playing fine football even if passed his best. Prior to his departure for America, the Roscommon County Board held a reception in his honour. Dr. Hugh Gibbon, Chairman, said that if Michéal go on as well in the States as he did with the people of Roscommon, there was a bright future in store for him. Dr. Donal Keenan, county captain, also paid tribute to his prowess and wished him well in his new endeavours.

Michéal was not long making his mark in America and he played full forward on the New York side that lost to Meath at the Polo Grounds in the 1951 National League final. He also figured prominently the following year. In 1953, he captained the Midwest team which won the American championship. Since arriving in the States, Michéal has also been successful in his studies and recently qualified as a dentist. He has also been a splendid fielder of the ball and a long accurate kicker, lining out usually at midfield or at full forward. He stands six feet two inches in height and weighs fourteen stone. He is held in great esteem in America and in 1954 was elected President of the National Council of the GAA in America- a truly great honour for one of Limerick’s finest footballers.

Footnote: Michéal later returned to Glin in lived in Church Street for the rest of his life. He was elected Life President of the Club in 1990 and was a great supporter of the club until he passed away a number of years ago. His achievements on the field of play will never be forgotten.

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