Thursday 18 January 2018

Army officer killed in tragic road accident was 'hugely admired'


Photo of Lt Col Jack Griffin who died when he was hit by a car in Thurles on Saturday
Photo of Lt Col Jack Griffin who died when he was hit by a car in Thurles on Saturday

TRIBUTES have been paid to a senior officer in the Defence Forces, who served on multiple overseas stints and recently helped guide his local hurling team to county final success, after he died in a tragic road accident.

The incident occurred on Saturday afternoon when 47-year-old Jack Griffin, known locally as Jackie, was struck by a car at Turtulla Cross near Thurles in Tipperary.

He received treatment at the scene by paramedics and was rushed to South Tipperary General Hospital.

However, he died of his injuries.

The male driver and three children in the car were not injured in the incident.

Jack Griffin was a lieutenant colonel in the Defence Forces and served in Africa and the Middle East and was most recently based in Brussels where he was working with other EU military staff.

His friend and colleague Commandant Sean O Faharta, a Defence Forces spokesman, said Jack "epitomised the values and ethos of the Defence Forces of loyalty, integrity and courage".

"He was a great leader and would never shirk responsibility. He was hugely admired and our thoughts are with his wife Trish and three children."

He played for and then worked as a coach with Thurles Sarsfields, and was a selector on the side that won a county championship just last week.

The club secretary Thomas Callanan paid tribute to Jack's commitment and dedication to the club.

"Jackie would have come up through the ranks. He would have won a county minor hurling title in 1985 and then would have progressed and played as a senior.


"His Army background lent itself to him getting involved in terms of physically preparing teams and in the last few years he was involved with the senior team when they won the two county finals."

Local councillor Jackie Cahill said the whole town "was in shock".

The scene of the accident was sealed off to allow for a forensic examination. Gardai have appealed for information.

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