Kerrymen bury political differences in Glasnevin

Sat, May 26, 2012, 01:00

WHATEVER THEIR political affiliations, Kerry folk stand by one another.

This was the message coming from Minister for Arts Jimmy Deenihan of Fine Gael at a function in the stylish Glasnevin Museum at the famous cemetery this week.

Introducing a lecture by Dick Spring to mark the centenary of the Labour Party’s foundation, the former GAA star was rich in his praise for the former rugby international: “As a fellow Kerryman I am very proud of the achievements of Dick Spring,” said Jimmy, adding that the former tánaiste and Labour leader had played “a key role” in the Northern Ireland peace process.

Getting a bit carried away, Deenihan told his audience the Labour Party “always did the right thing in the interests of the country”.

This must have come as a great comfort to Spring’s successor, Eamon Gilmore, who was in the audience. Some of his troops are getting a tough time on the doorsteps.

Earlier, guide Shane MacThomáis conducted a tour of the cemetery and the graves of prominent Labour, and other, political figures.

When the group arrived at the grave of Jim Larkin, the trade union giant was brought back to life in a surprise appearance by actor Jer O’Leary.

“The great appear great because we are on our knees,” he boomed at the Labour people.

Mind you, Big Jim never had to worry about opinion polls . . .