LEGENDARY Cork ladies footballer manager Eamonn Ryan was laid to rest on Saturday, his loss uniting GAA supporters across the county.
A brilliant coach and an utter gentleman, he passed away after an illness last week at the age of 79.
As well as winning a staggering 10 All-Irelands in 11 years at the helm of the ladies footballers, he had great success with the Na Piarsaigh and Watergrasshill hurlers, Beál Áthan Ghaorthaidh, UCC and the Cork footballers.
While Covid restrictions severely limited the numbers at the funeral in Beál Áthan Ghaorthaidh where he lived, mourners lined the roads in his native Watergrasshill to acknowledge the GAA great they called 'The Master'.
At UCC's The Farm training ground, Cork ladies footballers past and present formed a guard of honour, before the cortege made the journey to the church of Naoimh Fionnbarra agus Rónán, with his brother-in-law Fr Aidan Vaughan presiding over the funeral mass.
While best known for his coaching nous, he was a fine player too, lining out for Cork in the 1966 and '67 All-Ireland finals, and excelling for his clubs Watergrasshill, who won a junior county in 1974, and Glenville. During his time studying in UCC he captained the footballers to a county final, which they lost after a replay to Beara.
The peak of Ryan's coaching career was in those halcyon days with the Cork ladies footballers, but he was involved with the Cork seniors on three occasions, including Munster titles in 1983 and '99. He was also manager when the Cork minors lifted the 1991 and '93 All-Irelands. On the hurling front, they'll certainly never forget his influence in Na Piarsaigh, on board for all three of their senior counties, in 1990, '95 and 2004. But then he'll never be forgotten by Cork GAA fans everywhere.