A weekend Gaelic football blitz held in memory of a much loved-firefighter, GAA coach and former player has raised thousands of pounds for charity.
Darren O’Neill, also known as Horse, died suddenly in March last year, aged 41.
The former player at Naomh Séamas CLG in Aldergrove, Co Antrim, coached the ladies team to a Division 2 title and a Junior Championship.
He also had a spell with St Malachy’s Belfast.
Teams close to Darren included Aldergrove Ladies, Laochra Loch Lao Ladies, Aldergrove Men’s, St Malachy’s, NI Fire & Rescue Service, Antrim Masters and Bredagh.
Teams from each took part in the tournament on Saturday at Cherryvale playing fields in south Belfast, which was followed by an evening of entertainment and fundraising, with all proceeds going to charities involved in suicide awareness.
Initial estimates suggest at least £3,000 was raised, with Aldergrove Ladies and NIFRS winning the Darren O’Neill memorial trophies.
Sorcha Campbell, who organised the blitz alongside Colin Connolly, said Saturday’s events brought together all those who held the “well-thought of and much sought-after” coach in high regard.
“It was lovely to see so many people turn-out to remember our much-missed friend and to raise funds for a cause that is very close to all our hearts,” she said.
“We were delighted Darren’s wife Orianne and his family were able to join us to watch a tournament that was played in a wonderful, friendly spirit and atmosphere – it was a great credit to Darren.”