Pádraig O'Toole

Padraig O'Toole outlines the contribution of his grandfather Luke O'Toole to the GAA. Elected as General Secretary in 1901, Luke worked tirelessly to ensure that the GAA had solid foundations which would allow it to thrive in Ireland. He was involved in setting up the first GAA offices in Dublin, in fundraising for and organising the purchase of the Croke Park grounds, and in developing strong links with branches of the GAA overseas. He worked alongside former GAA President Jim Nolan, travelling all over the country in an effort to boost the Association nationwide. Luke made it his business to ensure that the GAA got increased coverage in the national press, and he worked through some of the most turbulent times in recent history - the Easter Rising and the Civil War. Padraig recalls stories from these times that have been passed down through his family - stories of panic at Croke Park on Bloody Sunday and of regular card games between Luke O'Toole and two of his close friends, Harry Boland and Michael Collins. Padraig is a keen scholar and has a great passion for the Association, and his account of the life and times of his grandfather is never less than compelling.

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