Irish golf mourns death of former Union President Patrick Foley

​Patrick J Foley (Muskerry) served as GUI President in 1977 and EGA President from 1997-1999

  • 19 April 2017

Caption: Patrick J Foley, as pictured in the GUI Yearbook for 1978

The death has occurred of Patrick J Foley (Muskerry), former President of the Golfing Union of Ireland.

Foley left an indelible mark on the game of golf, at home and abroad, serving as President of the European Golf Association (EGA) from 1997 to 1999.

It was in 1977 that Foley rose to the rank of GUI President having served with distinction as captain and president at his beloved Muskerry in Cork. His lifelong association with golf continued in the late '90s when elected to the position of EGA President.

A man of great vision and immense ambition, Foley set high standards for Irish golf. Writing in the GUI Yearbook of 1978, in which he recounted his year as President, he reflected: "In my view the time for action has come and a recommendation that would receive my benediction would see the immediate formation of a hand picked squad of players, that, with an extended and closely supervised training regimen, would have, as their objective, the winning of the European team title two years hence."

Foley's bold ambition would not be realised until 1983, when Ireland reclaimed the European team title for the first time since 1967. Acutely aware of the negativity pervading Irish golf at the time, Foley was not a man easily deterred.

Expanding on his hopes for Irish golfing success, he wrote: "There are those who maintain that the material to achieve this eminence is simply not available to us at present but, to attain our purpose, we have got to maintain an optimistic approach and then adopt the aforementioned procedure with all immediate dispatch."

Dearly beloved husband of Deirdre (née Mulcahy) and adored father of Hugh, Vivienne, Jean, Patricia and the late Diane., Patrick J Foley died peacefully at the Bon Secours Hospital on Tuesday, 18 April.

He will be sadly missed by his loving wife, son, daughters, daughter-in-law, sons-in-law, grandchildren, brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, nephews, nieces, relatives and a large circle of friends.

Lying in repose at the Temple Hill Funeral Home, Boreenmanna Road of Jerh. O'Connor Ltd. Rosary on (Wednesday, 19 April) evening at 8pm. Removal on (Thursday, 20 April) at 7pm to St. Patrick's Church, Rochestown. Requiem Mass on Friday (21 April) at 11am. Funeral afterwards to St Finbarr's Cemetery. House private, please.

May he rest in peace.