Mark Rooney, the much-loved team mate and club stalwart to whom County Sligo dedicated their fifth AIG Senior Cup win on Saturday, passed away just a few hours later after a long battle with cancer. He was 38.
Team members had been in close contact with Mark throughout the campaign, some even writing his initials on their golf gloves as a reminder that they were going to win the final for him yesterday.
During the trophy presentation at Carton House on Saturday afternoon. team captain Shane Flanagan dedicated the club's 3-2 win over Castle to the popular family man.
"I'll just finish by saying there is one person missing from the stand up here, it's our dear friend and panel member, Mark Rooney and if there were two words that summed up the inspiration behind this victory, they would be 'Mark Rooney'. I can assure you all that the first house we will call to when we get back to Sligo will be to see Mark."
Just before the presentation, captain Flanagan explained how highly regarded Mark was amongst his team mates.
"He was in the panel, he was a member of the WhatsApp group and he would be mentioned in every team meeting," he said. "And to be honest, a lot of the lads would have had his initials on their glove. They had the height of regard for him. We all know people like that — people who earn everyone's respect the right way. He is one of them.... A great lad. A super, super guy."
Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam