Martin and Mark


 September 25, 2012

Donegal GAA legend Martin McHugh has revealed the heartache behind ‘that’ emotional moment with son Mark after the final whistle of Sunday’s All-Ireland final.

Pictures of the Kilcar father and son hugging and crying with eachother have gone around the globe.

Now Martin has revealed the reasons behind the magical moment.

He says the loss of his father Jim and his mother Kathleen’s Alzheimer’s condition all got too much for him.

“On a personal level, we’ve all taken hard blows.

“My father Jim died last October, and he was thrilled to see Mark win an Ulster title last year. He would have been overjoyed to watch him lift Sam Maguire.

“My mother Kathleen has had Alzheimer’s for around 12 years now,” he said.

The 1992 All-Ireland winner revealed how he and Mark headed to father Jim’s grave before his son travelled to Dublin for the clash with Mayo at Croke Park.

“We said a few prayers and we shed a few tears. Then we called to see my mum.

“All of that came together when I spotted Mark after the game. All of those emotions came to the boil.

“I have had people telling me they were moved by it, and that it was a great television moment.

“But the reality is that it was a private moment played out in public.

“For a moment, we forgot that the television cameras and the photographers were there. It was about family and blood, something that the GAA is all about,” he said.