Golden Boys

Olympic champions Bob Tisdall and Ron Delany.

By Irish America Staff
October / November 2001

There must be something in the water of Nenagh, County Tipperary. The town’s offspring seem to have unusually high traces of medal. Make that gold medal.

1956 Olympic 1,500 meter winner, Ronnie Delany, with the Tipperary Olympic Gold Memorial Committee has launched a project to honor three famous champions with Nenagh roots. Already fundraising has begun on the plan that will take £80,000 to complete. Designed by noted artist Jeanne Rynhart, a sculpture will feature life-size bronze statues of gold medallists Matt McGrath (16 lb. Hammer, 1912), Johnny Hayes (Marathon, 1908), both record-breakers, and Bob Tisdall (400m. Hurdles, 1932). Tisdall, the only living honoree (he resides in Australia), still lectures on physical fitness. And he practices what he preaches. At 86 he did his first parachute jump from 12,000 feet, at 90 he crewed the Lough Derg regata and at 93 – the oldest Olympian in the world – he jogged 500 yards with the 2000 Olympic Torch.

With a success and longevity rate like its natives have, one wonders why they’re not bottling Nenagh water! ♦ 

Leave a Reply


More Articles

News: Sinn Féin Surge
in Irish Election

The Irish people went to the polls on February 8 to elect a new government. Almost a month later, that government has...


News: Ireland’s Best
Vacation Destinations

The best hotel and tourism operators in Ireland were recently recognized at the 30th CIE Tours International Awards of...


News: Museum of
Literature Opens in Dublin

Ireland has a new landmark cultural institution. The Museum of Literature Ireland (MoLI) on St. Stephen’s Green in...


News: Irish Hotels
Scoop Forbes Awards

Eight Irish hotels have been recognized as ranking among the world’s best hotels, restaurants, and spas, according...