All Ireland winning Tipperary minor football manager David Power was honoured as the Tipperary Person of the Year in Dublin on Saturday night for bringing great glory to the county.
According to Tipperary Association Dublin president, Liam Myles, the win gave us a reason to celebrate what is best about our beloved county – characteristics such as dedication, commitment, skill, pride in the jersey and sportsmanship. The victory lifted the spirits of all Tipperary people last September, he said.
Kilsheelan-Kilcash man David received his award at the annual Tipp Association function in the Louis Fitzgerald Hotel.
On the same night legendary publican Liam Aherne of the Palace Bar was inducted into the Tipperary Hall of Fame.
Ardfinnan native Liam Myles told the attendance that David Power hails from Kilsheelan country, as fertile and productive a part of Tipperary as there is, a land where the Anner River wafts its way down to join the gentle flowing River Suir.
“Of course, it sits in the southern side of the famed Slievenamon and could claim with justification to be THE Valley of Slievenamon with Kilcash located on its gentle slopes.
“It’s a place where the people are hard working, highly committed and honourable in every thing they do, where many a hero has been raised. In David Power, Kilsheelan-Kilcash has a new hero.
“David, you did your family, Kilsheelan-Kilcash, Tipperary and all of us proud in 2011. I congratulate you wholeheartedly as a well deserved winner of the Association’s Tipperary Person of the Year Award for 2011”.
David Power’s success in 2011 has already been recognised with the award of Manager of the Year by the Munster GAA Council and the Annerville Executive Sports Award for Tipperary.
“Key to the success of the minors in 2011 was the support David had from the whole management and support team, both County Boards and the financial and moral support from the Friends of Tipperary Football. The victory of 2011, like all victories was earned through hard work, dedication and commitment by all involved – and the contribution of the parents of panel members should be recognised in this context. The Association salutes you all.
“A minor team that beats Cork, Limerick and Kerry in Munster, Meath and Roscommon on the way to a final win over with Dublin will surely go down in history as worthy winners of the Markham Cup”.
Mr Myles said he was delighted to see so many football people present on a great occasion for Tipperary football.
In an emotional acceptance speech, one of the youngest winners of the Tipperary Person of the Year award, Mr Power thanked everyone who had played such a key role in guiding Tipperary to the All Ireland title.
He had particular praise for his family, and especially his father Michael who had played such a key role in nurturing his love of Gaelic games.
“I thank him for his advice - we didn’t always agree - but he has been a great help to me”, he said.
There was a large turnout from his own Kilsheelan-Kilcash club as well as other clubs in South Tipperary and football supporters from throughout the county.
He said he was a very proud Tipperary man to be honoured in such a way.
As well as thanking all the players and management, he had a special word for the players’ parents who had played such a crucial role in the march to the All lreland title.
Others who had played major roles were the County Board, Football Board, his own Kilsheelan-Kilcash club and everyone who had prepared him for county team management.
Mr Power predicted a great future for Tipperary football despite the relegation of the seniors to Division Four. In relation to the minors, he said that if Tipp managed to at least retain the Munster title this year it would represent a huge achievement.
The second award on the night went to Liam Aherne of the famous Palace Bar, Fleet Street in Dublin.
According to former Tipp Association president, Jarlath Daly, the Aherne family took over the Palace Bar in the 1940s and the place has been a “home from home” for many Tipperary people since.
Bill Aherne (Liam’s late father) saw to it that anyone from the county was made welcome and offered support when ever needed. His son Liam and family have carried on that proud tradition.
“In addition, they have developed a business where all are made welcome and those with a love of sports are catered for in every way with a host of sports personalities, artists, literary and many other cultural personalities numbering among their clientele. The business exudes a convivial atmosphere where one can spend some quite and pleasurable time.
“Among the many famous VIP visitors to the Palace Bar over the years none was made more welcome than “Liam McCarthy”!! Since Bill Aherne took over the Palace, the All-Ireland trophy has visited the Palace Bar and thankfully following recent successes by Tipperary senior hurlers the traditional post match visit carries on. Great days to be alive and in the palace Bar!
“The Tipperary Association Dublin has very strong historical links with the Palace Bar and the Aherne family. Members regard the Palace as their headquarters and a natural home for “Tipps” in Dublin.
“Liam’s generosity and support of the Association knows no bounds. He has provided the Association with meeting facilities upstairs in the Palace for many decades now and hosted many functions, where beverage and food has been provided - often appearing miraculously and with no fuss - in the style of the man!
“A true gentleman, Liam Aherne - and by extension the Aherne family - has given huge support and backing to the Tipperary Association Dublin for many years now and is well deserving of been inducted into the Association’s Hall of Fame.
The award was presented by sponsor Louis Fitzgerald in whose hotel the function took place.