Death of Hugh Barney O’Donoghue
As family, friends and old playing colleagues gathered in St Anne’s Church, Portmarnock on Friday last, to bid a final farewell to the late John Joe O’Reilly, news filtered through that his good friend and former teammate Hugh Barney O’Donoghue had passed away at his residence in Virginia. Though he was christened Hugh Bernard, he was never known as anything else only Hugh Barney to his many friends and legions of supporters. Like many great Cavan players of the 1960s Hugh Barney is fondly remembered for his great performances on the football field for Cavan and Virginia. He played for Cavan minors in 1955, Cavan juniors in 1957 and following his displays he got his place on the Cavan senior team. He played in four Ulster finals all against Down; in 1959, 1960, 1962 and 1964 and he was a substitute for the 1965 final due to a recurring injury. Down were among the top two or three teams in the country at that time but Cavan surprised them in 1962 and followed this up with another victory in 1964. Hugh Barney also won a Dr McKenna Cup medal in 1962. He played a key role in all these victories. He was always a centre man; he played full-back, half-back, centre-field, centre-forward and full-forward on different occasions during all these championship encounters. He was a towering player with a great physical presence and very difficult to mark.
Hugh Barney gave great service to his native club Virginia. Cavan club football in the late 1950s and early 1960s was of a very high standard and senior championships were difficult to win. Virginia had been in the doldrums for many years but in the late 1950s they began to emerge as strong championship contenders. They won a junior championship in 1958 and they followed this up with senior championships successes in 1959 and 1962. Hugh Barney and his brother Alo played leading roles in these memorable victories. Hugh Barney was a leader who led by example and he was always very popular with his teammates both on and off the field.
Cavan County Board GAA extends its deepest sympathies to his wife Bernie, daughters, Ann, Gráinne, Róisin, sons Tadhg, Brian and Tom, grandchildren, brother Alo, sisters Philomena and Sr Veronica and all the extended family. Hugh Barney will be sorely missed by his family and many friends.
Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam dílis.