Willie Neenan

He was running years before he met Marie his good and devoted wife
And Willie Neenan is still running with him ’tis a way of life
A World Masters Games over fifty silver medallist in nineteen eighty three
I remember in the fifties him and his brother John D
At cross country races in Liscahane just out of the Town of Millstreet
The famous Neenan brothers against Cork’s best did compete
Up and down the wet and high fields they set a cracking pace
For the glory of old Millstreet the young Neenan men did race.
John D had the bug of wander in Millstreet he did not stay
His future not in Duhallow he now lives in the U S A
But Willie is still running and in his seventies he’s still seen
Outpacing the best of his age in the famous Millstreet green
Duhallow’s greatest living athlete so much about him to admire
He is a role model for many up and coming athletes and the younger generation he inspire
He must have ran hundreds of thousands of miles of roadway yet he’s still lively on his feet
I recall when Willie Neenan was the one they had to beat.
In more than fifty years in athletics he competed against the best
And he never was found wanting when he was put to the test
Willie Neenan is still running though the years not on his side
To Duhallow and to Millstreet he is one who brought great pride.
That Willie Neenan is still running I am not surprised to hear
At sports meetings he will be competing even in his ninetieth year
In my school days in the fifties and that’s going back in time
The flying Neenans of Millstreet inspired the bards to rhyme.

by Francis Duggan

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