Anthony was born on the 20th of January 1979 to parents Breege and Dave. He has 2 older brothers Dave (Junior) and Ken, 2 younger brothers Patrick and Seán, one sister Mary who was the youngest in the family. He was brought up on the outskirts of Ballina in County Mayo. Anthony who was also known as Tony and Tonster had a typical happy childhood in the area where children were free to roam and play in the lovely countryside on the banks of the river Moy.
Tony was blessed with a strong natural physique and from a young age he loved to play sport where he always excelled. There were often in excess of 10 children playing football and hurling in his parent’s back garden on any given evening. There were goal posts erected and a miniature golf course built in the field adjacent to his parent’s house at various stages over the years. Tony went on to play hurling and football for the Ballina Stephenites GAA club from underage up to senior level. He also played for the Mayo U16 and minor county hurling teams. He won a senior county title with the club hurling team in 1996 as well as many other titles over the years. Tony was a very well liked teammate who played the game hard and fair – when the going got tough….the Tonster got going!! He always enjoyed the after match refreshments – win, lose or draw. Tony was an amicable, easy going and unassuming person off the pitch who loved the craic and was very popular among his friends and teammates. Tony always liked to get to Mayo football games over the years and was also a keen follower of Liverpool FC.
Tony went to school in Culleens National School followed by St. Muredach’s College in Ballina. Tony was very intelligent and did well at school with minimum effort!! He was very technically minded and went on the study Engineering at DIT in Dublin. Growing up Tony was a grafter and well used to hard work whether that was on a building site, the family farm or in the bog. Tony had a college job as a doorman and this may have been the first step to decide to eventually join an Garda Siochana. Tony did his Garda training in Letterkenny and when he passed out was stationed in South Dublin at Kill-O-The Grange. He transferred to Dundalk and was finally stationed at Omeath on the Cooley Peninsula. Tony was a well regarded Garda and while his physical presence was a benefit his best asset was arguably his way of talking to and dealing with people. Just like on the sporting field it was always great to have Tony on your Garda team.
Tony met his future wife Nicola when he was stationed in Dublin. This eventually led to him requesting a transfer to County Louth where he settled in Blackrock which is Nicola’s home town. Tony and Nicola were married and have 3 lovely children called Lucy, Alex and Andrew. Tony was an adoring father and his life revolved around his family and work. Tony and Nicola had great plans for their family and their future life together as their children grew up but tragically they did not get to fulfill their dreams together. Tony’s life was taken when dealing with an innocuous routine situation on the 11th of October 2015 at the tender age of 36.
Ar dheis Dé go raibh a h’anam dílis.