herald

Saturday 7 December 2019

'Trolls sent death threats to my mum and sister' - Greg

Greg O’Shea with fellow presenter Cassie Stokes
Greg O’Shea with fellow presenter Cassie Stokes

Love Island winner Greg O'Shea said he became emotional after reading death threats sent to his family.

The reality TV star (24) said the "rattling" messages from online trolls targeting his mother Carol and sisters Laura and Jessie began flooding in after he split with Amber Gill in September, with whom he had coupled up while in the Love Island villa.

"I've had people tell me they love me and the whole lot but I've also had people tell me really bad stuff like death threats and that," he told the Herald.

"It started when me and Amber decided not to continue on our relationship. I can understand why people would be kind of p**sed off that I haven't tried to follow that Love Island islander lifestyle but it just wasn't right for me.

Rattling

"We had seen each other once in a five or six-week period. If you're going to have a happy relationship you're going to want to see the other person a lot. It's more so British people were really p**sed off we didn't try make it last longer.

"It was a bit rattling reading some of the stuff. It's so creative some of the stuff people come up with. I was like, 'how does this person even comprehend this sort of stuff?'"

The Limerick native, who plays for the Ireland Sevens rugby team, said he has a tough skin when it comes to online abuse after experiencing years of "locker room banter".

"The big thing was, just when they got on to my mother and my sisters. That was a step too far for me; it got me emotionally. Things being said to me I could shrug it off. I'm used to locker room banter with the lads so I have a hardened shell in that sense," Greg said.

"I nearly had to comfort them in some ways, because they were upset reading certain stuff. When the death threats slipped out to my mom's DM (Direct Message) and my sister's DM and I had to say, 'Mom, it's OK, it's just these trolls from the a**e end of nowhere'."

After finishing up as a stand- in for Eoghan McDermott on RTE 2fm's breakfast show with Doireann Garrihy, the star said he understands the "upset" over RTE's choice of him for the show.

Speaking with presenter Cassie Stokes at the launch of the Just Eat National Takeaway Awards, he said: "I can see why people would be p**sed off."

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