It is with deep, deep sadness that we share the news of the passing of Dr. Mick Loftus, President of the Gaelic Masters Association.
 
Dr.Mick was a gentleman, a friend to many, a great doctor and a GAA man through and through. He began his playing career with his home club, Crossmolina Deel Rovers, schools football for St.Muredachs, Ballina and Sigerson Football for University College Galway.
 
His dedication and skill shone through from an early age and he was chosen for the Mayo Minor panel, who narrowly lost out to Tyrone in the All-Ireland final in 1947.
 
He joined the Senior panel in 1949 and was part of the All-Ireland winning team in 1951 as a non-playing substitute.
 
Injury took its toll on him as a player but his love for the GAA continued and he found a new role as a referee.
Dr.Mick had many administrative roles, including chairman of the Connacht Council, and in 1984 was elected as President of the GAA. He had a real passion for the GAA and wanted to develop the sport for everyone, make it more inclusive and promote it both nationally and internationally. He was part of many working committees within the GAA and his views were respected by all.
 
Dr.Mick was the first chairman of Coiste na Seanóirí of Cumann Luthchleas Gael in 1990. He was to the forefront in the promotion of masters football and hurling. He encouraged all players, regardless of age, to get involved and was eager to see the competition develop year on year.
 
When the Gaelic Masters was formed in 2012, Dr. Mick was always a guiding hand, a source of encouragement and he was thrilled to see the competition that was close to his heart go from strength to strength. His knowledge of the competition under his stewardship in the GAA was of great benefit to the Gaelic Masters Association as it is now.
 
In 2018, the Gaelic Masters Association named the All-Ireland Masters Championship the Dr.Mick Loftus Cup.
It was a true testament to a legend of the sport he loved so much.
 
He enjoyed attending the games and we were thrilled to see him attend the last Masters game of 2022, when Mayo played Sligo in the Ruddy Cup in his native Crossmolina. He took to the field that day as the cup was being presented but Sligo had to wait a little longer to receive it, as someone spotted Dr.Mick come onto the pitch. The crowd turned around and a round of applause spontaneously took hold. He is held in the highest regard by so many. Dr.Mick was a real people’s person and was happy to pose for the many people, both young and old, that wanted their picture taken with a true hero.
 
There is no doubt that over the coming days, weeks and years Dr.Mick will be spoken about far and wide. He did so much for the GAA and the Gaelic Masters Association. He was an exceptional footballer, a doctor, a leader, a true friend, a gentleman, a legend. He will be sorely missed by all that had the pleasure to cross his path.
As an association, we will continue to uphold, develop and promote the ideas of Dr.Mick Loftus, an inclusive organisation where age is only a number.
“We don’t stop playing
because we grow old,
we grow old
because we stop playing”.
We would like to extend our sincere sympathies to his wife Edie, children Michael, Orla, Patrick & Dr. Joe, daughters-in-law Dr. Eleanor, Monica & Jordan, son-in-law Donal, his 10 grandchildren, extended family, neighbours, the GAA and Gaelic Masters communities, Crossmolina Deel Rovers and his wide circle of friends.
Reposing at Crossmolina Deel Rovers GAA Club, St. Tiernan’s Park, Ballina Rd, Crossmolina on Monday evening from 4pm until 7pm.
 
Funeral will arrive to St. Tiernan's Church, Crossmolina on Tuesday for Requiem Mass at 12 noon followed by burial in Crossmolina Cemetery.
 
Dr. Mickey’s funeral Mass will be live streamed on www.churchtv.ie/crossmolina
 
Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam.

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