Stamullen man Gabriel Howard, a leading figure in the sport of cycling, has died.
He rode for Meath and Dublin in Rasanna Tailteann, and won a stage in birr in 1965. Howard rode in 21 Rasanna , a total of 205 stages, over his career.
Following the departure of race organiser Joe Christle in 1973, he became part of the committee entrusted with keeping the race, now the An Post Ras, going.
Howard had been part of an unofficial protest team sent to Munich in 1972 by Christle, highlighting the British role in Ireland at the time.
Initially a member of St Patrick’s Cycling Club in his home parish of Stamullen, he later became the backbone of Stamullen Racing club, and was delighted to see the Giro d’Italia pass through there in 2014.
After his cycling career, Howard assisted in broadcasts of races for TV and radio. He and his wife Kay were inducted into the Irish Cycling Hall of Fame in recent years.
In his early 70s, he is reported to have died following a farm accident in Stamullen. It is understood he was struck by a teleporter while on a potato farm, and died yesterday at Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital, Drogheda.
The death also occurred yesterday of Michael Vaughan, of Virginia and formerly of Kilbride, Trim.
In 1981, when the Ras Tailteann was facing a financial crisis, his Trim-based Tirolia company, which traded in domestic heaters and cookers, stepped in and the event became known as the Tirolia Rás Tailteann for that year.
Sympathy is extended to the Howard and Vaughan families.