Anthony Foley’s death: Books of condolence open across Munster

Irish flag being flown at half mast outside local authority offices as mark of respect to rugby coach

Munster fans gathered outside the, Stade Yves-du-Manoir, to pay respects to Munster Rugby coach Anthony Foley, after news of his sudden death in France. Video: Racing 92

 

Books of condolence have opened across Munster following the sudden death of Munster rugby coach Anthony Foley.

Foley (42) died on Saturday night at the team hotel in Paris.

Books of condolence were opened in the seven local authorities in Munster on Monday as a mark of respect.

The books were open to the public in Clare County Council, Cork City Council, Cork County Council, Kerry County Council, Limerick City and County Council, Tipperary County Council, Waterford City and County Council.

The Irish flag is being flown at half mast outside the local authority offices.

Shannon Rugby Club also opened book of condolence in memory of their former player in Limerick.

Second Captains

President Michael D Higgins extended on Sunday his “deepest sympathies” to Foley’s family and close friends.

“Anthony Foley excelled from a young age and made a huge contribution to the successes of Munster and Ireland, in both his playing and coaching careers,” he said.

“He was regarded with great respect and deep affection not just among the Munster rugby fans but by all those interested in Irish sports and those with whom they interacted abroad.

“While news of his death will be received with shock by all those in the rugby and sports world, it is of course first and foremost a great tragedy for his family and close friends.”

Taoiseach Enda Kenny said he was shocked by the death of Foley. “It is tragic to lose such a fantastic man at such a young age,” he said. “My thoughts are with his family and his club mates at this awful time.”

A veteran of Irish and Munster rugby, Foley played for Ireland 62 times, captaining his country on three occasions.

He also led Munster to their first European Cup victory in 2006. In all, he made 86 appearances in European competition for his province before taking over as head coach in 2014.

The Irish Embassy confirmed that it is providing consular assistance to Foley’s family.

If the cause of death is not immediately clear, French judiciary police may request a postmortem, which takes from two to seven days, after which the remains are released to the family for burial.

After the death was announced, Munster supporters assembled in front of the stadium to pay homage to the former player and coach, with applause and cheers.

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