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The death has occurred of one of Ruan’s and Clare’s finest hurlers, Pat Henchy.

In the 1950s and 60s, Pat’s name was synonymous with hurling at club, college and county level. Originally from Fountain, Pat learned his hurling in the local Barry’s field and it was evident from a young age that he had star quality.

He played on the Clare minor team from 1955 to ‘57 playing at centre forward on all three teams. He had the distinction of playing minor, junior and senior for his county in the same season.

He made his senior debut, again at centre forward, against Cork in a game easily won by the rebels. For the next number of years, he alternated between the half back and half forward lines before having his first championship victory in ’64 against Limerick in a game in which he scored three points. He was a playing substitute on the ’67 team defeated by Tipperary in the Munster final. Pat’s final intercounty game was against Galway in a senior challenge in 1970.

At college level, Pat had great success winning four Fitzgibbon Cup medals in ’58 (UCC), ’59,’60 and ’64 with UCD. His performance in the ’64 final, where he scored 4-3 from play earned him selection on the Fitzgibbon Centenary team selected in 2012.

At club level, Pat’s performances were central to Ruan’s wonderful senior championship successes of ’59, ’60 and ’62, where he lined out at left half forward on all teams. His equalising score in the ’62 final earned Ruan a draw against Sixmilebridge ensuring a replay which they won by five points. It was his skill, ball striking ability, balance, movement and athleticism that stood him out as a special player during this golden era for his club.

A long time Dublin resident, Pat was ever so popular on his many visits to Ruan. His warm personality, engaging company and great friendliness meant that he was always a magnet for chat and conversation. He will be sadly missed by his many friends and teammates in Ruan and Clare.

Ruan GAA and Cuala GAA have extended its sincere sympathies to all members of Pat’s family at this sad time.

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