Tributes have poured in for the manager of Loughrea Mart, All-Ireland hurling winner and former inter-county referee, Jimmy Cooney, who has died at the age of 68.
A spokesperson for Loughrea Mart confirmed the manager’s sudden death in a statement on Tuesday, August 1st, 2023.
It reads as follows: “It is with great sadness and devastation that we, at Loughrea Mart, announce the sudden passing of our manager, Jimmy Cooney.”
“Jimmy took over management from Gus Egan in 2013 and has successfully managed the mart to date.”
“He was extremely well-liked and respected by the buyers and sellers of livestock in the mart.”
“Jimmy was regarded as such a kind and dedicated manager by all the staff. He was always there for the staff and made the mart a friendly place to work.”
“Jimmy will be sadly missed by all the staff, committee, patrons and the wide circle of friends at the mart. May he R.I.P.”
“The mart will remain closed until next Tuesday, August 8th, 2023,” the spokesperson concluded.
A spokesperson for MartEye said: “He will be missed by so many. He was always a big supporter of us in MartEye from the very beginning. R.I.P. Jimmy.”
On RIP.ie, he has been described as a “real gentleman, who was always a pleasure to meet over the years and was very helpful in the mart”.
Gerry Hoade, on behalf of Tuam Co-operative Livestock Mart management and committee, described him as a “gifted hurler and mart manager”.
A spokesperson for Headford Mart management said: “Sincere condolences to all the Cooney family. May Jimmy R.I.P.”
A spokesperson for Aurivo Balla Mart said: “R.I.P. Jimmy.”
Another said he was “always a pleasure to meet and deal with” and his “sudden death will leave a huge void with his family and in his local community”.
Thomas (Gus) Egan
Just over one year ago, in June 2022, Cooney, during one of the mart’s general cattle sales, paid tribute to Thomas (Gus) Egan, following his passing at Galway University Hospital on Tuesday, May 31st, 2022.
Egan “dedicated his life to Loughrea Mart and was its longest-serving manager for forty years”.
He served as the mart’s secretary and later secured an administrative role before he was appointed manager.