A special memorial will be erected in a Co Cork town to a man who once held the world record for being buried alive.
Michael ‘Mick’ Meaney became an international celebrity after he was buried alive in a coffin in Kilburn, London, on February 21, 1968 — emerging 61 days later.
Although Mr Meaney was from Ballyporeen, Co Tipperary, the memorial will be unveiled in his adoptive hometown of Mitchelstown where he worked for Cork County Council for many years.
It will feature the inscription: Mick Meaney — ‘A man who dared to dream when dreams were not allowed’. With a time capsule design it will show a picture of Mr Meaney emerging from the coffin and will be inserted into a fawn-coloured stone slab in the south-eastern corner of New Market Square.
Details of the final draft of the memorial were provided to Charleville/Fermoy municipal district council at a meeting in Mitchelstown.
Municipal district officer Pauline Moriarty said that council officials had held a number of meetings about the design with Mr Meaney’s daughter, Mary.
When Mr Meaney emerged from the coffin, celebrities of the time queued up to be pictured with him, including the legendary actress Diana Dors, considered in the 1960s as the British version of Marilyn Munroe.
When lowered into the ground, beneath 7ft of soil, famed Cobh tenor, Hollywood actor, and boxer Jack Doyle sang some songs.
The British House of Commons even debated his exploits, with some MPs expressing concern for his safety and asking if he should be immediately dug up.
Mr Meaney beat the previous record of 45 days set by American Digger O’Dell.
He was described as being tough as nails and wanted to be a world-famous boxer, like his hero Joe Louis.
Many who knew him said he might well have achieved that ambition if he hadn’t lost the tips of some fingers in a building site accident, during which he was actually buried alive for the first time.