GAA man killed in south Armagh farm accident

The Murphy farm in Silverbridge, Co Armagh where Gene Murphy (70) died in a workplace accident on Thursday afternoon. Picture:
Gareth McKeown

A SOUTH Armagh farmer who died in a tragic workplace accident has been described as a "real gentleman".

Eugene (Gene) Murphy (70) died on Thursday afternoon after an accident at his farm in Silverbridge. A post-mortem was carried out yesterday to determine the cause of death.

It is believed he was crushed by a tractor.

The Health and Safety Executive said it was aware of the fatality and was investigating the circumstances.

Parish priest Fr John Heagney said Mr Murphy's death had stunned the community and described him as a "real gentleman" from a popular family.

"He was a very well-respected man in the community and a very-well known farmer. It's very, very sad, he was a much-loved member of the parish and will be sorely missed," he said.

The father of four, who also had eight grandchildren, was from a GAA family who were heavily involved in Silverbridge Harps GFC.

Club secretary Jarlath Burns said members were in mourning at the death of former player Gene.

"The Murphy family have always been long-standing, respected members of our club. All members of Gene's family and himself would be very much involved in every aspect of the club's activities.

"Any event that we ever held Gene would have been there. Himself and his wife Brea and their family would have been very respected members of our club and highly active members of our club," he said.

"He was a very relaxed, very laid-back man, never would get excited about anything at all and I suppose it's typical of the personality trait that would be highly respected in this area.

"Gene was a very gentle, lovely, highly respected, quiet man who was always about our club," he added.

Mr Murphy was also the chairman and a founding member of the Silverbridge Angling Club with sympathy expressed to the family from members.

Sinn Féin councillor Barra Ó Muiri said the entire community of Silverbridge and the surrounding area was "in shock".

"Mr Murphy was a well liked individual who came from a very respected family in the area. There is a strong sense of community here in Silverbridge and I have no doubt that the people of the area will rally around the family in the coming days," he said.

Mr Murphy's death is the second farming tragedy in the space of two weeks.

On August 15 Co Down farmer Gerard Lively (60) was killed when the tractor he was driving was involved in a collision with a car on the Bryansford Road at the junction with the Kinnahalla Road in Hilltown.



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