Kieran McGurk - his death has shocked the community. INLM3911-233con
Kieran McGurk - his death has shocked the community. INLM3911-233con

THE GAA community in Lurgan was shocked this week with the sudden death of Kieran McGurk.

One of Armagh’s best ever players, Kieran’s death will leave a void within his immediate family and the wider community.

Kieran, who was 49, captained the Sarsfields to the club’s only Senior Championship success back in 1990. At county level, he captained Armagh Seniors, and played several times for Ulster at interprovincial level.

Kieran’s wife Geraldine told the ‘MAIL: “I have been amazed at the support our family has received over the past number of days, we are so grateful to all the people who phoned, sent messages of support or called at our home to pay their respects.

“Kieran had been so supportive of me during the time I spent with illness.

“It has become apparent to me how much he was thought of both in GAA circles and in the wider community.

“Our neighbours and friends have been so helpful in our time of need. I don’t know how any of us would have coped without them.”

His brother James, a member of the Steelstown club in County Derry said: “A lot of people may not realise that Kieran had a trial with Tyrone minors but didn’t make the squad.

“Ironically, in the following years, he appeared to play his best football against Tyrone for Armagh.

“He was always modest about what he had achieved with Armagh and when you remarked about how well he had played in a particular game, he would immediately move on to another subject.

“We have had messages of support from near and far and we appreciate every one of them.

“Following Armagh’s win in Killorglin in 1981, some off the Kerry players travelled back to Dublin with the Armagh team by train and Kerryman Jack O’Shea suggested that Kieran had a great future in front of him in the game.

“Kieran always gave his all whether he was competing in a challenge game or an Ulster final.”

He is survived by his wife Geraldine, daughter Ciara, son Ryan, granddaughter Niamh, his mother Mary who lives in Lismara in Craigavon.

Brothers Colm, Philip, James, Liam and Declan, Sisters Una and Anne-Marie.

His father Peter is deceased and his brother Damien died at five years of age.

For more on Kieran’s legacy see page 8