Cork GAA mourn death of superfan 'Jonty' O'Leary

'Jonty' O'Leary, one of Cork GAA's most loyal and colourful supporters, has passed away.
Cork GAA mourn death of superfan 'Jonty' O'Leary
Cork fans Cyril Kavanagh and Jonty O'Leary celebrate against Dublin in the All-Ireland ladies football final at Croke Park in 2016. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

'Jonty' O'Leary, one of Cork GAA's most loyal and colourful supporters, has passed away.

O'Leary's red and white outfits and sombrero hats made him one of the most recognisable fans in the country and he delighted in cheering on Cork sides in all codes and grades over the past 60 years.

Joe Seward, sports presenter with Life FM, paid tribute to his friend: "Jonty played the drums in the Rebel Band and could be seen anywhere from Donegal to Dungarvan or Croke Park to Cusack Park cheering on his beloved Rebels in the company of his great friends and band colleagues: Thomas 'Bomber' Roche, Pa 'The Piper' O'Leary; Cyril' The Bird' Kavanagh; Ray Lucey, Shane Murphy and Eddie The 'Eagle 'Burns.

"Jonty attended his first All-Ireland in 1956 and was a constant presence at Kent Station to greet Cork teams whether they won or lost championship deciders at Croke Park.

"Cork wasn't his sole love and witnessing his beloved Barrs win the Cork County Senior Football Championship in 2018 after a 33 year wait was also a particularly special moment which he cherished and celebrated as only he could.

"Whatever the result, Jonty ensured the mood stayed upbeat and he was the perennial optimist."

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