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The Lansdowne Family were devastated to hear of the passing of one of our greatest International players and a magnificent character, Pat Casey.

Our deepest condolences go out to his lovely wife Ann, sons Billy (a star U19 player at Lansdowne) and Tony, and daughter Judith (who is married to former Lansdowne star and coach Stephen O’Connor).

Pat himself was a renowned schools player with CBC Monkstown driving them to the Senior Cup semi-final in 1958 where they lost 3-0 to a strong Terenure team after losing a player early in the game and no subs allowed.

He went to UCD and took the place by storm both on and off the field. And he fitted in a bComm along the way and ended up a Chartered Accountant. After that it was like a whirlwind that hit Lansdowne.

A notable group of lads joined the club around that time and all became lifelong friends and legends of the club. Dr. John Craig, his doctor and buddy, Noel Dwyer, Donal Chambers, Eddie Byrne, Noel Hoffman, Bryan O’Neill, Paul van Cauwelaert, and Joe McAvin (Bective) to name but a few.

Pats rugby flourished as did his career in finance. Starring many times for Leinster, he went on to wear the green jersey of Ireland 12 times with great pride, culminating in what has been acknowledged as Ireland’s greatest ever try v England at Twickenham in 1964.

Open your imagination to the mercurial Mike Gibson slicing through the England defense at his own 10 yard line, and as the defense recovered Gibson headed left and executed a perfect ‘scissors’ with Centre Jerry Walshe. Walsh was clear but tailing towards the right touch line and going inside the England 22. As the tacklers approached he saw a blur of pace and power cutting back from the right as Caso called for a scissors and he took the ball at full flight to crash under the posts for a “try for all ages”.

When you think of sports greatest moments that come to mind…….the names Bolt, Messi, Ronaldo, Wilkinson, Pigott, Farrah, Best, Charlton, Pele, O’Gara, O’Driscoll and Caso !!

Pat was a fantastic character, universally loved in Lansdowne. Full of fun and laughter and proud of his great family and happy home. He also gave it back to Lansdowne in spades, playing down the teams in the club to the 3rd B’s and starring at the World Golden Oldies for Lansdowne in 1981 and 1993.

Pat has bourne his illness in the intervening years with great bravery, fight and humor. The love and support of his family was ‘key’ to his will to live and today a great gentleman joins the list of Lansdowne Legends who have passed this way. And my own story is like so many, I was honored to have played on the same pitch as this splendid man, to have listened to his hilarious stories and to have had my life enriched in the process.

Mick Quinn LFCTID.

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