arry Magill

Tributes paid to ‘true gent’ Harry

By Staff Reporter

Tributes have been paid to a much-loved Greencastle man who died last week after a battle with cancer. Harry Magill, the honorary president of Greencastle Rovers Football Club, passed away last Wednesday (February 15) at the age of 77 after developing a rare heart tumor earlier this year.

A bricklayer by trade, Harry was a dedicated sports fan and attended every Rovers home game up until very recently.

Harry, who lived in England in the 1960s had helped found the Luton Celtic Supporters Club in 1965. The club has gone on to be one of the biggest Glasgow Celtic supporters clubs in England. In 2006 he was made honorary president of his beloved Greencastle Rovers and at his funeral on Saturday the team performed a guard of honour for him as well as giving a wreath in the form of the club’s shirt. He was a well known character in the area and was a respected figure amongst all generations.

In May last year Harry was diagnosed with a tumor in his throat which was removed, however in January of this year doctors discovered a rare cardiac tumor. He spent four weeks in the Mater Hospital before his death and prior to that at the home of his close friend Rosaleen Mullan.

Rosaleen who cared for him along with her family, said he will be sorely missed by everyone in the community.

“He lived in the area for years but I only got to know him about 15 years ago after his wife Ann died,” she said. “He was my best friend. He was like a member of our family, my children all looked up to him, everyone in the area did. All the young people thought very highly of him.”

Rosaleen said that on his deathbed he spoke of how he didn’t want a big fuss at his funeral.

“He wanted no frills or no fuss at his funeral but he will have been up there watching on and he would have been pleased as punch with the guard of honour.”

Paul McAdorey, first team manager of Greencastle Rovers Football Club, said Harry was the heartbeat of the club.

“He was involved with the club from day one and was at every home game, rain, hail, sleet or snow,” he said. “He was always smiling and never said a cross word about anyone. I never seen him down in the dumps.”

Both the first and second teams played on the day of his funeral after postponing kick off in order to attend the service. The players wore black armbands and observed a minute’s silence before the matches – which they both won – in honour of Harry.

“We wanted to be there for him, but we also knew he would have wanted us to play the match,” added Paul.

Harry Magill was laid to rest in Our Lady’s Acre cemetery on Saturday after a short service at his devoted friend Rosaleen’s home in Arthur Avenue.

 

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