06/07/2006

Queen's honours Tyrone GAA Manager

Tyrone GAA manager, Mickey Harte, has today been honoured by Queen's University in Belfast.

He was awarded an honorary Doctorate of the University for services to Gaelic Football, which he received at a graduation ceremony this afternoon.

Mr Harte, who was born in Glencull, near Ballygawley in County Tyrone was educated at the Christian Brothers Grammar School in Omagh, and then attended St. Joseph's College in Belfast (now St Mary’s), where he trained to be a teacher.

After teaching at De La Salle Boys School in Kircubben for five years, he moved to St Ciaran's in Ballygawley, where he brought numerous Tyrone, Ulster and All-Ireland Vocational Schools titles to the school in his 22 years there, as well as a National League title and All-Ireland Minor and U21 victories for his county.

During his last year at the school, he finally brought the most prestigious award in Gaelic football, the Sam Maguire, back to Tyrone after an absence of 100 years.

Tyrone beat old rivals and neighbouring county, Armagh, in a memorable All-Ireland Final in 2003.

While the celebration was still ongoing, Harte's men fought off Kerry in 2004, and returned the cup to the county for a second time.

Delivering the citation, Queen’s Registrar, James O’Kane said: “Mickey Harte has now captured six national inter-county titles in seven finals as a manager, as many as his county had gained in the previous century.

“His leadership qualities have been instrumental in helping to guide his team and county through the highs of victory and also the lows, following the tragic loss of his team captain and former Queen’s footballer, Cormac McAnallen."

Mr O'Kane continued: “His sporting feats have become legendary but they are merely a mirror image of the fulfilment he has experienced in other walks of his life. Mickey Harte is regarded as someone of outstanding integrity and honour, who conducts himself with the highest standards of decorum in everything he undertakes and this University today recognises his contribution and achievements.”

(EF/SP)

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