Westmeath GAA joined forces with Pieta House at the recent county football finals in Cusack Park in order to remember local Gaels who have died by suicide.
At the football finals played on October 29, a plaque was unveiled in memory of all those local GAA members who have lost their lives by suicide, with a Pieta House sign now displayed prominently at TEG Cusack Park, Mullingar.
Gerard Tiernan of Pieta House, Athlone was in attendance on the occasion for the unveiling.
In a statement, Westmeath GAA chairman Sean Sheridan said the county board wished “to acknowledge the sad passing of some of our members and patrons over the last number of years to the terrible tragedy of suicide”.
“In memory of these people, we want to ensure that we at Westmeath GAA are playing our part in highlighting this problem. Our moral duty is to make people aware of the help and services that are available to everybody from Pieta House, Athlone and their other branches elsewhere in Ireland,” said Mr Sheridan.
“Westmeath GAA is very proactive in ensuring the health and wellbeing of all our members and patrons, with each of our 47 clubs having a health and wellbeing officer in place to deal with local club issues.
“The GAA is the largest sporting organisation in the county and as TEG Cusack Park is our head office and county ground, it’s important that we make a strong statement and play a leading role in the fight against suicide and self-harm. With the unveiling of this plaque and sign, we are helping to create awareness and to let people know that they are not alone in their struggles. There is help available.
“As a large sporting organisation, it is our moral responsibility to use every means at our disposal to try to avoid the terrible tragedies we have witnessed in the past,” he added.