A dark cloud hung over the Clann na nGael community this past weekend with news of the passing of Donie Shine Senior.
There was a huge outpouring of grief for the last number of days and vast crowds attended his funeral in Drum church, travelling from all sides of the country to pay their respects.
While it is only natural to grieve, we should also be proud and celebrate a life that was lived to the full by a man who gave so much to the club and community.
Donie was an iconic figure within our club as a Player, Manager, Administrator and lifelong supporter. As a manager, he led the senior team to 7 County titles and 5 Connacht Championships. The team also reached 4 All-Ireland finals, giving the club exposure and respect on a national level. Although they never reached the pinnacle, he did taste success at All-Ireland level by winning the Kilmacud 7’s tournament in 1989.
During this time, he also managed clubs in neighbouring counties, and remarkably led Clann (Roscommon), Longford Slashers (Longford) and Athlone (Westmeath) to county final victories in one calendar year! His success at club level was noticed further afield and he went on to manage the Roscommon county team in the mid 1990’s and again in 2005.
Throughout the years, Donie Shine Snr was involved as a mentor with many of the club’s underage teams and there are likely very few players in the Clann setup who did not receive his guidance at some point in their career.
While there have been many tears in the last few days, the Clann na nGael community are better for knowing Donie Shine and having him impact on our lives.
The huge crowd that ascended on Drum Church yesterday were treated to refreshments afterwards in Johnstown clubhouse and reminisced with collections of match reports and photos of Donie which will forever be part of the Clann museum and in the history of this fine club, which Donie was a huge part of over the decades.
The club passes our deepest sympathy to Donal’s wife Lil, his daughters Karen, Clodagh and Susie, his sons Mark and Donal Junior, his brothers Enda, Michael and Paddy, his extended family, neighbours and wide circle of friends.
Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam dílis.