A wide cross-section of the GAA community gathered in Páirc Uí Chaoimh on Friday, May 17th, to honour long-serving Cork County Secretary, Frank Murphy, who retired in December after 46 years in that role.
Guests included GAA President, John Horan, Munster GAA Chairperson Liam Lenihan, Bishop of Cork, John Buckley, former Directors General of the GAA Páraic Duffy and Liam Mulvihill, representatives from Cork GAA clubs, various other counties, former and current County Board staff, members of the board of Páirc Uí Chaoimh, All-Ireland winning captains and managers, representatives of Blackrock GAA, Murphy family members and many more.
County Chairperson, Tracey Kennedy, the sixteenth chairperson and last chairperson to serve with Frank Murphy, paid warm tribute to him in her speech, as did Uachtarán John Horan, while video tributes included Liz Howard (Tipperary), Brian Cody (Kilkenny) and Ger McKenna (Kerry), along with former Taoiseach, Enda Kenny and concert promoter Oliver Barry, among others. MC on the night was Marty Morrissey, and Frank himself gave an extensive address to those present.
During Frank Murphy's term of office, Cork won 63 All-Ireland titles, including 9 senior hurling and 4 Senior Football, along with 138 Munster Championships and 12 National League titles. Over the course of his career, he was a selector on 4 All-Ireland Senior winning teams, 6 All-Ireland U21 teams and 5 All-Ireland Minor teams, along with an All-Ireland Club Championship winning Blackrock side. A distinguished referee, he officiated at two All-Ireland Senior hurling finals, a minor All-Ireland Final and 6 National League Finals, as well as ten Cork County Senior Hurling Finals and one County Senior Football Final. He also refereed County Finals in Clare and Kerry, and had the unusual distinction of refereeing a Kilkenny Football Final. Frank also refereed on the international stage, at All-Stars tours in San Francisco and LA, in the Australian Hurling Championship and during the first ever Compromise Rules series in Cork along with Australian referee Ron Sawyers.
Off the field, he oversaw the purchase and development of what is now Páirc Uí Rinn, as well as the original and recent redevelopments of Páirc Uí Chaoimh. He continues to be actively involved with his club, Blackrock.
All in Cork GAA wish Frank well in the next phase of his life.
Ní bheidh a leithéid arís ann
WRT that last line, I fecking hope not