Dermot Earley - Leader & Legend
In June 2011, the GAA Museum launched an exhibition to honour the late Dermot Earley, former Roscommon footballer and Chief-of-Staff of the Irish Defence Forces. Dermot Earley - Leader & Legend celebrated Dermot's life and featured souvenirs from his career as a hugely successful gaelic footballer, playing for both Roscommon and Connacht, and from his distinguished military career in the Irish Defence Forces.
The exhibition was a great success and attracted many visitors during its one year-tenure in Croke Park. Items from this exhibition, including Dermot Earley's medal collection, Roscommon jersey and All-Star Awards, are now on permanent display in the museum's first floor "Legends of the Game" display.
The GAA Museum is dedicated to promoting an appreciation of the values, culture and history of Gaelic games. This includes honouring those who have made an outstanding contribution to the national game, something which Dermot Earley certainly did throughout his long and distinguished GAA career as a player, manager and mentor to young people.
The temporary exhibition at the GAA Museum was based on an exhibition developed by the Curragh Military Museum in County Kildare. The primary focus of the exhibition was on Dermot Earley, his playing days as a Gaelic footballer with Roscommon and Connacht and his rise through the military ranks to hold the highest office of Chief-of-Staff of the Irish Defence Forces. In addition to personal items that belonged to Dermot, the exhibition also included Dermot’s county and provincial jerseys, match programmes, imagery and footage of his playing and managerial career. From his military career, the exhibition featured a number of uniforms, his medal collection and items that represented his military career, including decommissioned weapons.
Uachtarán Chumann Lúthchleas Gael, Críostóir Ó Cuana, welcomed the launch of the Dermot Earley exhibition, He said: “Dermot Earley was one of the most prolific GAA players of our time and he contributed enormously to Gaelic games in so many ways. While he shone on and off the pitch, his highly respected career in the Irish Defence Forces also deserves to be honoured and remembered. The exhibition at the GAA Museum will pay respect to one of our greats and highlight the glorious career and legacy that Dermot Earley has left behind”
Commenting on the exhibition, Dermot Earley’s son, Dermot Earley Jnr said, “It is a real honour for our family to see our father’s memory celebrated with this exhibition at the GAA Museum in Croke Park. The exhibition features so many aspects of my father’s life that really illustrate his successful career within the GAA and in the military. On behalf of my family, we would like to thank the GAA for a truly touching tribute to my father and we hope that many GAA fans will get the chance to enjoy the memorable journey through his life”.
Dermot Earley - Leader & Legend temporary exhibition was open at the GAA Museum until June 2012.