On January 24 this year, Ray McGill passed away in the loving care of the staff of Brookhaven Nursing Home, Ballyragget in Kilkenny.
Mr McGill was from Emo Park in Ballybrittas and was a keen cross country runner – enjoying great success in the 1960s.
Laois Athletics have penned this lovely tribute below. May Ray Rest in Peace.
The recent passing of Ray McGill, Emo Park, Ballybrittas severed a link with the St Conleths Ballybrittas Athletic Club cross country team of the 60’s.
Ray was an integral part of the St Conleths team which dominated Laois Cross Country in the early to mid 60’s.
Their Senior Mens team won four Laois Senior Cross Country Championships in a row, from 1963 to 1966 inclusive.
Consistency was the hallmark of Ray’s performances, as he produced many excellent displays of cross country running.
His best ever performance was in 1963, when he finished in third place on a gruelling 7 and a half mile course at Monavea Crettyard.
His clubmate Jimmy O’Connor won that race, finishing ahead of Pat Knowles St Abbans in second.
Ray went on to be a vital team scorer on all 4 of their championship winning teams, in what was a golden era for the Ballybrittas based club.
Their panel of runners in that golden era was; Jimmy O’Connor (who went on to win two Individual Titles), Ray McGill, Donal Fenlon, Tom Fenlon, Paddy Ward, Eddie Slevin, Christy O’Connor, Kevin Keogh, Brian Walsh, Dan Kavanagh.
Rest in Peace Ray.