When the shooting started at Croke Park, Michael Hogan from Grangemockler threw himself onto the pitch beside Frank Burke, the great Dublin forward he was tasked to mark.
“Mick Hogan is dead” he said. "Can we get a priest?"
When the shooting started at Croke Park, Michael Hogan from Grangemockler threw himself onto the pitch beside Frank Burke, the great Dublin forward he was tasked to mark. “They’re shooting at the crowd,” Burke shouted. He whispered an Act of Contrition. They began moving towards the sideline, getting closer to the cinder track and the picket fence that separated the pitch from the bank now occupied by the Cusack Stand. “We’ll lie in here close,” Hogan said. “We might get some protection.”
Then came another blast of gunfire. “I’m shot,” groaned Hogan. By the time the shooting had stopped, Hogan was dead. Jim Egan, his Tipperary team mate from Mullinahone, went to him. He got up and walked towards the Tipperary players corralled by police along the Railway wall at the Hill 60 end of the goal. Egan’s face, hands and shorts covered in blood. “Mick Hogan is dead,” he said. “Can we get a priest?”
Hogan was 24-years-old, the second eldest in a family of four boys and three girls. He was in his second year playing for Tipperary and lined out against Dublin at right-corner-back. He had left the family farm in Grangemockler the previous day, carrying messages as an IRA volunteer to deliver when he landed in Dublin.
He returned home a martyr, his funeral cortege stretched from the railway station at Clonmel to Grangemockler. Hogan lay overnight at the village church in a coffin fitted with a glass lid, flanked by local Volunteers. He was buried the following day in the local cemetery wearing the Tipperary kit given by his team mate Jack Kickham. In 1926 the great stand at Croke Park was named in his honour, becoming the site of some of the greatest Irish sporting triumphs ever witnessed.