In the heart of Finn Park, amidst the sea of blue and white scarves, one seat remains conspicuously vacant. It is the seat of Denis O’Neill, a man who had dedicated his entire life to Finn Harps FC and today, his family proudly sponsor the match ball on the 6th anniversary of his passing to celebrate his enduring legacy.
Denis, affectionately known as “The Major” among the fans, was more than just a supporter; he was the very embodiment of unwavering dedication to his beloved club. His journey with the team was a remarkable one. It started with his brother-in-law Joe Logan, who graced the green pitch in the famous blue and white jersey. But Denis’s devotion extended far beyond familial ties.
For half a century, Denis, along with his devoted wife Kathleen and their family, selflessly gave their time and energy to Finn Harps. They were the beating heart of the club, a true embodiment of the term “football family.” They travelled to every game, both home and away, creating a tapestry of memories that will forever be etched in the annals of Finn Harps history.
Denis wasn’t just a passionate supporter; he was a skilled carpenter who played a vital role in building the current clubhouse. His dedication knew no bounds, and his craftsmanship will stand as a testament to his love for the club for generations to come.
As a season ticket holder, Denis rarely missed a match. His presence in the stands was as reliable as the sunrise. But it wasn’t just his unwavering attendance that made him a legend among the Finn Harps faithful. It was his quick wit and irrepressible humour, which served as a beacon of light during both the highs and lows of the club’s journey. “The Major” was famous for his one-liners, and he wasn’t shy about letting management and staff know that they needed to do better. His words carried weight and he was respected not just as a fan but as a voice for improvement.
Denis was there through the glory days, celebrating victories and promotions with unmatched passion. He revelled in the good times, but what truly set him apart was his resilience during the darkest moments. Even in the doldrums of relegation battles, Denis never wavered. His passion, drive, and commitment were unwavering, and he inspired those around him to keep the faith.
Finn Harps FC wasn’t just a club to Denis; it was a way of life. His love for the team was so profound that he famously flew the blue and white flag in his garden, a symbol of his unyielding allegiance.
Today, as we remember Denis, we also celebrate a life lived in full devotion to Finn Harps FC. His legacy is not only etched in the club’s history but in the hearts of every fan who had the privilege of knowing him. Denis “The Major” O’Neill will forever be remembered as the epitome of loyalty, passion, and the unwavering spirit of Finn Harps.