Hugo's death cuts link with glorious GAA era

June 23rd, 2017 11:10 AM

By Southern Star Team

Hugo Casey (centre), who was captain of the last Macroom team to win a senior football championship in 1962 and whose passing last week marked the end of an era.

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THE death last weekend of Hugh (Hugo) Casey in Cork has cut another link with a glorious era in the history of football in Macroom.  

Hugo was captain of the last Macroom team to win a senior football championship in 1962, a win which gave Macroom its 10th county senior title and its second in four years. He was a Cork minor in 1957 and a member of the Macroom senior team the following year when Macroom won its first county title since 1935.  

Avondhu were well beaten in the final but it was Macroom’s turn to taste defeat the following year when St Finbarrs defeated the champions in the decider. Hugo was on the Cork senior team, beaten that year by Kerry in the Munster final at Killarney and on the Cork team which suffered a shock defeat to Waterford in the 1960 semi-final.  

He was on the Macroom team beaten in the county semi-final by Avondhu, missed the first round defeat by the same team the following year through injury, but later captained the juniors to a Mid Cork semi-final.  

In 1962, with Hugo as captain, Macroom seniors defeated Seandun, Millstreet and UCC to reach the county final where they proved too good for the Muskerry divisional side in a unique, but bitterly-fought decider on a score of 3-4 to 1-4.  

The Macroom team was: Mick Dunphy; Jimmy O’Callaghan, Timmy O’Callaghan, Dan Murray; Jimmy O’Donoghue, Mick Gould, Tim O’Leary; Pat O’Sullivan and Niall Fitzgerald; Joe O’Brien, Eric Ryan, Owen Lynch; John Farmer Murphy, Hugh Casey and Ritchie Graham. Sub Nicholas Dromey came on for the badly-injured Mick Gould. 

Macroom went into decline after this victory, but Hugo played on with the seniors until 1970, and was an example to the younger emerging players of all that a loyal clubman should be.

As a mark of respect, Macroom GAA club members formed a guard of honour for the removal of remains to Clogheen parish church and sympathy was extended to his wife Antoinette and his four daughters and their families and to his sister Regina in Macroom.  Hugo was predeceased by his only brother, Niall, who was well known in GAA and Comhaltas circles.

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