The death of David Deloughry, The Ring, Bennettsbridge came as a big shock to the people of Bennettsbridge, and lovers of our national games in New York and Kilkenny. David, who was 77, died unexpectedly at his home, on the Monday after the All-Ireland.
Born in New York, he was son of the late Elizabeth Dunne who married Richard Deloughry. Blackmill, Kilkenny. David returned to Ireland at 2 years of age and lived with his aunt Kathleen and cousin Dick in Bennettsbridge. Received his primary education in Bennettsbridge N.S. and celebrated his First Holy Communion and Confirmation in the parish. He then went to C.B.S. Secondary School in Kilkenny and hurled with the school during his time there.
He won senior hurling championships with Bennettsbridge in 1952/53. In the same years he helped city team, Dicksboro win two minor hurling championships. He also figured with the ‘Bridge in a gold watch tournament in Thomastown in 1954. He was a member of The Ring Dazzlers seven-a-side team in 1954.
David returned to New York at the age of 19, where his great interest in hurling continued and in 1957 he captained the Kilkenny New York hurling team which won the New York Championship. In 1958, a selected New York team defeated the Kilkenny senior team in an exhibition match at The Polo Grounds and it is interesting to record that two Bennettsbridge men captained the opposing teams,(David, New York),() Michael Kelly, RIP, Kilkenny).
His service to the Kilkenny GAA in New York, both on the field of play and in an administrative capacity, (he served as treasurer for over a decade) was recognised in 1977, when David, his wife Teresa, sons, Kevin and Stephen and daughter, Denise were honoured by the Kilkenny Association at a function in New York.
When David retired from hurling he played handball for a long number of years.
His family were all important to him and when the grandchildren came along he was always there for them.
He worked as a court clerk for many years and was highly regarded by his employers and colleagues.
It is worth noting that when David’s parents retired to Ireland, they made their home in the famed Ring in Bennettsbridge(20 house estate, renowned for 23 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Medals, including, Noel Skehan, record 9. Johnny Dunne , RIP, ’33 and ’35, and Dan Kennedy, RIP Capt 1947). David’s connection to Bennettsbridge and it’s hurling history is further endorsed by the fact that his mother Elizabeth was a sister of “the lovely Johnny Dunne”.
David and his family were regular visitors to Bennettsbridge when his parents were alive. Afterwards the Ring house became his second home and he visited a few times each year to catch up on all the news. He had many good friends and liked nothing better than a visit to the pub for pint and a chat. He loved Irish music and dancing and was also a great supporter of the Card Game on Tuesday nights in The Community Centre.
David always supported fundraising activities in the parish, particularly when it was for the local GAA Club.
He liked to time his visit around All-Ireland time and this year, sadly it was to be his last one. He watched the Kilkenny/Galway match in the home of Jimmy Griffiths and afterwards joined some of his friends in the local to discuss the game. On Sunday night he enjoyed the Sunday Game on television in the Ring with his friend, Paddy Kealy. The announcement of his death on Monday caused great sadness among his many cousins and friends in Bennettsbridge and his death has left a void in the community.
Many of David’s friends and team mates attended his funeral, these included,Tommy Brennan and Joe O’Shea, Castlecomer and Michael Duggan, Glenmore(New York).
Last year, Barrie Henriques, GAA Sports Writer and author, conducted an interview for the Kilkenny People Newspaper, featuring some ‘Bridge hurlers, including David. When news broke of David’s death, the interview was put up on the internet and it was of great interest to GAA followers in New York and at home. Some of his New York friends were unaware that he had senior hurling medals with Bennettsbridge, the modest David never blew his own trumpet.
Expressions of sympathy were received through e-mail and telephone.
The remains reposed in Johnsons Funeral home where his sons, Stephen, Kevin and daughter, Denise, welcomed family members and friends who came to pay their last respects. David’s team mates from the ‘Bridge attended and Canon Patrick Duggan recited the Rosary.
On Thursday, the 4th October, the remains were received in St Bennett’s Church by Canon Duggan, PP,Tullaherin and Fr Dan O’Gorman, Woollengrange.
The Bennettsbridge and Dicksboro jerseys were placed on the coffin and family and former teammates carried their friend on his final journey
The Lessons were read by, Stephen and Kevin(sons).
Canon Duggan sympathised with the family on their sad loss and shared some of David’s family history with the congregation. David had always attended Mass in Bennettsbridge when he was home. On behalf of the family, he thanked the community for the support they had received from everyone since their arrival in Ireland.
Offertory gifts were presented by his children, Stephen, Kevin and Denise and included a sliotar, photograph and water and wine.
Tullaherin and Bennettsbridge choirs sang during the service accompanied by Mollie Cahalane.
As the coffin left the church the choir sang “The Rose of Mooncoin” in tribute.
David’s body was taken back to New York and reposed in David J.Hodder and Son Funeral Home, after which Requiem Mass was celebrated in St Barnabas Church. Burial took Place in Gate of Heaven Cemetery. The attendance included representatives of New York GAA and many of his friends and former colleagues.
He is survived by his wife, Teresa(nee Hawe), daughter, Denise. sons, Kevin and Stephen. grandchildren, Jesse, Emma, Eric and David, son-in-law, Peter Gavin, daughter-in-law, Rosemary. He is also survived by other relatives and friends in Bennettsbridge and New York