Death of legendary Meath full back, Paddy 'Hands' O'Brien

Story by John Donohoe

Saturday, 26th March, 2016 3:42pm

Death of legendary Meath full back, Paddy 'Hands' O'Brien

Paddy O'Brien.

The death has taken place of the legendary Meath footballer,  Paddy 'Hands' O'Brien, aged 91.

A member of the Meath teams that won the All Ireland senior football finals in 1949 and '54, the Skryne clubman was selected on the GAA Team of the Century in centenary year, 1984.

He was known as the 'Prince of Full Backs' and flanked by his cousin, Micheal O'Brien, and Kevin McConnell, was part of one of the most famous last line trios of the game.

He enjoyed two National League successes, three Railway Cup victories, selection of four Ireland teams, and club SFC honours with Skryne and with Sean McDermotts when he moved to Dublin to run a number of shops.

in 1956, the Irish Press ran a series of O'Brien's memoirs, and in 2013, he featured in 'Four Kings' by Philip Lanigan, the story of four of Meath's great full backs - O'Brien, Jack Quinn, Mick Lyons and Darren Fay.

His late wife, Kay, was from Meath Hill, and he is survived by four sons, Padraig, Gary, Tony and Gabriel. A daughter, Mary Philomena, predeceased him. He lived in Santry.

Meath Co GAA board has expressed its sympathy to the O'Brien family.


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