Sunday 23 October 2016

Tributes continue to pour in for Johnny

Johnny Lyons
Johnny Lyons
Shane Byrne

Sports and media figures have paid further tributes to broadcaster Johnny Lyons, whose funeral will take place in Dublin on Monday.

Several sports stars who knew him well will appear on a three-hour tribute show on 98fm tomorrow starting at 9am.

The 98FM sports editor, aged 49, was found dead at his home in Mountjoy Square, Dublin, on Wednesday.

His funeral mass will be at 10am on Monday at the Church of Saint Therese in Mount Merrion, followed by burial at Shanganagh Cemetery.

He is survived by his brother, Maurice, and his extended family.

He worked for the past 20 years at 98FM where he hosted his Sunday morning show, Now That's What I Call Sport. He had also worked for Today FM, the Daily Star, Sunday Tribune and Hot Press.

His friend Shane Byrne (44), former Ireland and Lions rugby star, told the Herald he will be "sorely missed".

"Johnny was a real louder and larger than life character. We had the same taste in metal music and we slag each other and watch concerts together. He was a good buddy," said the renowned hooker.


"His passion and enthusiasm was amazing. He knew sport inside out and loved it."

Sue Ronan (51), manager of the women's Republic of Ireland football team, said Lyons was "a friend and champion" of women's football from the days when he was press officer for the sport.

"He had such wide-ranging knowledge, including minority sports. He had a great jovial nature and had great one-liners. He's a huge loss as a person and a big loss to sport," she said.

Former Dublin GAA football star Charlie Redmond said Lyons "lived life to the full". He strongly established his radio show and was "an enormous asset" to 98FM, he said.

Colleague Stephen Doyle (36) said he and his colleagues have been blown away by the widespread, heartfelt reactions to his death.

"Hugely knowledgeable and a great entertainer, he showed his brilliance by making his sports show appeal to non-sports fans," he said.

Tomorrow's tribute show will be called Now That's What I Call Johnny.

FAI chief executive John Delaney said Lyons always had a great affinity with sports fans.

"He would get the best out of everybody. Every time he interviewed me, he always got more out of it than you were prepared to give," he said.

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