1954 Happy birthday to Mikey Sheehy, born in Co Kerry on this day in 1954. He was a professional Gaelic football player and is widely regarded as one of the best players of all time. Sheehy played his entire career for his local team Austin Stacks, and for his home county at senior level. He won an impressive 11 Munster, 8 All-Ireland, 3 NFL and 7 All Star titles in his career.
In 1999 Sheehy’s achievements were recognised and honoured when he was named in the Gaelic Football Team of the Millennium. He currently works as part of the Kerry team coaching and management staff.
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1999 On this day in 1999, the Central Statistics Office revealed that the most popular baby names of the previous year were Conor for boys and Chloe for girls. Traditional Irish names remained high on the list with Seán, Jack, James and Adam all featuring in the top ten for boys and Ciara, Sarah, Aoife and Emma remaining popular for girls.
Nearly 20 years later, society has changed with many people caring more about celebrities and fashion than heritage and tradition. It was revealed in America, shows like Duck Dynasty were influencing new parents when choosing baby names more than a sense of tradition.
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2001 BirdWatch Ireland made a rather bizarre public appeal on this day in 2001. They wanted members of the public or local businesses to donate or loan them several hundred ghetto blasters or music stations so that they could play the sounds of farm traffic.
The aim was to attract corncrakes to the areas around the River Shannon so that they could be banded and tracked in order to save them from being removed from the area altogether. The corncrake population had been severely depleted in recent years, and the hope was that they could be maintained and preserved in the region. The birds were attracted to the sounds of tractors and other farm machinery because they associated it with freshly ploughed land, and an easy source of food.
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2004 Bob Tisdall died. Tisdall’s victory was described as having an “element of a fairy tale about it. I said to myself: “You’ve equalled the Olympic record Bob, you’re really getting the hang of this!”