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Thursday 8 December 2016

Dubs flock to sign book of condolence at GPO for rugby legend Axel

Fair City actress Claudia Carroll writes a tribute for the late Anthony Foley at the GPO Picture: Colin O'Riordan
Fair City actress Claudia Carroll writes a tribute for the late Anthony Foley at the GPO Picture: Colin O'Riordan

Hundreds of Dubliners turned out in to pay tribute to the late Anthony Foley.

The legendary coach (42) may have been an icon of Munster rugby but when it comes to honouring the father-of-two, his contribution to the sport crossed all provincial divides.

Foley passed away suddenly on Sunday from a suspected heart attack ahead of Munster's Champions Cup fixture with Racing 92 in Paris.

Queues

A book of condolence was opened in Dublin's GPO yesterday and among the first to sign it was Fair City actress and author Claudia Carroll.

"You can't not have heard of him. It's just absolutely heartbreaking," she said.

"It's absolutely harrowing. The whole country knew who he was. I read that they opened a book of condolences in Limerick and there were queues out the door.

"My dad told me what happened. He's a mad rugby fan and was very upset. I just thought I'd pay my condolences."

Clondalkin native Carmel Waters (70) came in to sign the book with her son Paul (37) and said she was particularly affected by Foley's passing, given she has another son his age.

"It's such a tragedy. I've all boys and they're all into sport and I got such a shock when I heard what happened," she said.

Rugby fan Darragh Gaffney (34), from Palmerstown, said he was a huge Leinster fan but admired what the former Munster captain had achieved for the whole sport.

Father

"I lived in Limerick for eight-and-a-half years and you couldn't not come across him down there. Being a Leinster supporter, I'd get some stick living in Munster, especially when they won the Heineken Cup," he said. "He was the embodiment of all that was good about Irish rugby. As a father of two young children myself, I can't even envisage what it's like to leave two children like that."

Cork native and rugby supporter Kate McEvoy (30) also signed the book and said Foley had contributed so much to the sport of rugby.

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