THE death occurred recently of one of Cork's most charismatic sport lovers and followers.
Eddie Mullins passed away at his parish in Chillum Washington DC in the loving care of his fellow priests and nuns.
It was a heartbreaking time for his family in Cork as they couldn’t travel to Washington to be with Fr Eddie because of Covid-19.
However, his family brought him home to be buried alongside his beloved mother Joan.
Eddie, who was the eldest son of Tom and Joan Mullins, grew up in Barrett’s Terrace with three brothers (John, Thomas and Dommie), and five sisters (Bernie, Margaret, Veronica, Helen and Mary).
Eddie went to school in North Presentation Primary School, and then went onto North Monastery Secondary School.
Upon leaving school. Eddie sat the Civil Service Entrance exam successfully and commenced his working life within the Cork courts system.
That allowed him to follow in his father’s footsteps, where he worked for 29 years.
During this time Eddie moved to Sarsfield’s Terrace and lived with his two aunts Rita and Francis Murphy.
Eddie had many strings to his bow in his sporting life.
He began playing basketball with St Mary’s in the early sixties, and then Corkonians, a club founded by his Uncle Pat.
He then went on to be PRO of Blarney Ladies Basketball Club in the 1980s, and brought in a lot of big sponsors which helped them to many successful years.
He was a big basketball fan and supported all the Cork teams: Team Britvic, Burgerland and Team Harp Larger.
Eddie will be always the remembered as been a snazzy dresser, walking into the Parochial Hall or Neptune Stadium dressed in the finest suits and silk scarfs.
He didn’t care what Cork team was playing Eddie was always there to support, however, when it came to local derbies Eddie sat on the fence, his brother Dommie recalled with a smile when I spoke with him about writing this tribute.
Eddie loved all sports, however, his greatest passions were his rugby and sailing.
From coaching in Dolphin Rugby Club to his unfailing support for the Irish International teams and his beloved Munster which remained with him his whole life through, no matter where he was.
Eddie’s greatest pleasure in life was his sailing.
From the disastrous and fateful Fastnet Race of 1979 to successes of the Admirals and Sardinian Cups he was a fan.
Also among the success in sailing was his involvement in setting up sailing for the disabled group. Eddie’s experience came to the fore during Italia ’90 when he was approached by a group of Irish fans to skipper a boat which they had chartered to sail from Naples to the Irish games for the duration of the tournament.
Eddie’s fee was tickets to the Irish games.
Eddie was once again back on the water for his 70th birthday with a sailing trip organised by his faith brothers and that gave him great pleasure.
Of all the relationships and friendships in his life none was more important or made him prouder than his son Garreth and grandson Nicky.
Garreth’s eulogy to his dad highlighted the bond between father, son and grandson.
In later life, Eddie’s path in life took a new turn when he began his studies for the priesthood.
He spent three years in Maynooth Seminary and then moved to Rome and joined the order of the Institute of the Incarnate Word and made his Religious Profession in 2015.
Eddie’s faith life led him to Washington DC and settled in Chillum.
He was ordained in May 2016 joined by Garreth, brothers, sisters, sisters-in-law and friend Dom who travelled from New York to join in the celebration.
Eddie proved to be very popular among his parishioners in Chillum, who welcomed him with open arms. He lived out his life with his faith community of brothers and sisters who cared so willingly and lovingly for him.
Eddie loved life and never let adventure pass him by and will be greatly missed by all who knew him.
He lived life to the full, and although he will be a huge loss to his family they will know he will be looking down from the heavens guiding them and giving them direction.
Rest in peace Fr Eddie.