The NYPD Gaelic Football Club presented a check for $10,000 to Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center last Wednesday as a result of their fundraising efforts, which included their annual battle against the FDNY Gaelic Football team in Gaelic Park.
First Deputy Commissioner Rafael Pineiro presented the check last week, which will go towards raising money for cancer research.
Members of the NYPD and FDNY Gaelic football teams lined out on Friday, June 10 for the annual charity GAA football game that saw the usual display of healthy rivalry culminate with the FDNY retaining the cup.
“The Fire Department were too fast and too young for us,” reflected Joe Kenny, vice president of the NYPD Gaelic football club.
“It was a close game, but the Fire Department retained victory again this year, they are a very tough club to beat.”
Normally the NYPD Gaelic football club donates funds raised to a police officer in need, but this year in memory of 9/11 they opted to donate to the world renowned Sloan-Kettering.
“Because there are a lot of 9/11 cancer related patients we decided to donate to Sloan-Kettering,” Kenny said.
The NYPD lined out in their navy blue jerseys with the FDNY in red, as both teams drew a generous crowd for the annual charity event.
“It’s such an exciting sport, you would be surprised at how many kids come to watch the matches,” Kenny told the Irish Voice.
Founded in the 1970s, the NYPD Gaelic football club aims to keep Irish heritage alive in the police force.
Kenny admits his interest in Ireland’s national sport was only stirred by his Bronx co-workers when he joined the force.
“I was a boy from Queens who had never seen a GAA game until I joined the NYPD,” he said. “I saw one game and became hooked.
“Half the team is Irish American. We have both soccer and rugby players and we have converted them,” Kenny added.
The match was played in memory of Anne Shea, late mother of Chief Mike Shea; Christine McCormack, the late wife of Detective Sergeant Peter McCormack; Maurice P. Greaney, late grandfather of Police Officer Mike Greaney; and Mary Donohue, the late mother of Detective Patty Donohue.
The end result was FD 2-9 and NYPD 1-8.
The NYPD Gaelic football club will host the 2011 international police GAA tournament this coming September, which will see teams from the police forces of Belfast, Dublin and London travel to New York.