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Carnacon mourns ladies football legend


PROUD MOMENT The late Jimmy Corbett celebrates after Carnacon beat Na Fianna of Longford to win the All-Ireland Senior Ladies Football Club Championship in 2011. Pic: Sportsfile

CARNACON and the wider ladies GAA community are in mourning this week after the death of one of the most influential coaches in the game, Jimmy Corbett.
Jimmy, aged 74, died suddenly at his residence in Rostigue, near Carnacon, on Friday last and will be buried today (Tuesday) in Burriscarra Cemetery after 12.30pm Mass in St Mary’s Church in Carnacon.
Thousands of people queued long into the yesterday evening (Monday) to pay their respects to Jimmy’s wife Sadie and his nine children, with many famous faces from the GAA in attendance.
Since the setting up of Carnacon Ladies GAA Club in 1986, Jimmy has been involved in coaching at various levels and enjoyed unheralded success with the Carnacon seniors, a team that is now a household name right across the country.
The club released a statement on Saturday, stating: “Jimmy managed many teams over the years, from our underage to our senior teams, and also the Mayo team for a number of years. Jimmy played a massive roll in all of our success - he, along with his fellow coach, Beatrice Casey, have led our senior team to a remarkable six All-Ireland titles, 16 Connacht titles, and 20 county titles, along with numerous underage titles. He has helped shape our girls into becoming some of the best players this country has ever seen, and under his tutelage we have produced county veterans such as Cora Staunton, Fiona McHale, Martha Carter and Michelle McGing to name a few.
“Jimmy was known for his motivational speeches before our games, and you could count on him to tell us to drive it forward and leave everything on the field. His passion and belief in his team was a driving force in all of our successes, and even if you were feeling down on yourself you knew Jimmy was on the sideline, cheering you on.
“Jimmy was a kind, caring person, an absolute gent in everything he did and always had a smile on his face. Jimmy was like a father to many on the team, and his untimely death has rocked our club, parish and indeed the whole LGFA community. Jimmy changed the face of ladies Gaelic football, he put it on the map and he will always be remembered as one of the legends of the game.”
Tony O’Connor, Chairman of Ballintubber GAA Club, said Jimmy was simply synonymous with football in the parish of Burriscarra.
“Jimmy spent hours and hours on our pitches in Clogher and Ballintubber training the girls of the parish and the success he enjoyed with them as a manager and a coach was truly remarkable. There is no doubting his status as a legend in Ladies GAA and everyone in the club would like to send our condolences to Sadie and his family. May he rest in peace,” said Tony.
Jimmy is survived by his loving wife, Sadie; sons, Kevin, Damien, Michael, Declan and Brian; daughters, Michelle, Lorraine, Yvonne and Marie; brothers, Michael, John Joe and Tony and his only sister Evelyn; sisters-in-law, Noreen, Majella, Maura, Bridie and Fidelma; brother-in-law, Patrick; grandchildren Meghan, Connor, Killian, and Ava; daughters-in-law, Ciara and Lisa; son-in-law Martin; also Tanya, Paul, Donal and Charm, nieces, nephews, relatives, neighbours and friends.