We had a truly momentous day in St. Joseph’s today! We welcomed back three very special past pupils. Ethan Twomey, Under-20 All Ireland Champion, walked through the school gates once again, along with former Sciath na Scol team mates and current All Ireland Minor Champions, Ben O’ Connor and James Dwyer. James and Ben were Joint Captains of the Cork minor All Ireland Champions this year.
The three young men have not changed very much since they were pupils in St. Joseph’s. Although they are now towering over us, they are the same pleasant, humble, respectful and determined people that we knew some years ago. They are such wonderful role models for our present pupils and they spoke with such authenticity and eloquence about self-belief, perseverance and the importance of working hard every day to achieve your goals. They also spoke fondly of their memories of St. Joseph’s.
We were so grateful that former St. Joseph’s Principal, Mr. Damien Keane, was able to join us to celebrate this unique occasion and it was wonderful to hear Mr. Keane’s memories of coaching the boys, along with Ms. Coakley, to a Sciath na Scol victory in 2014. The three champions were presented with a framed photo of the St. Joseph’s Sciath na Scol Winning Team of 2015, of which they were all members.
The pupils from Junior Infants to sixth class were enthralled by our VIP guests and listened to every word they uttered. Some of the staff were emotional to see how much our former pupils have achieved! I have no doubt that their visit will have a very positive impact on the future Cork GAA stars currently enrolled in our school. Josies abú – and although it’s difficult for a kerry woman to say- Up the Rebels!