Anyone who was at the Aviva the night that Ireland beat Bosnia to qualify for Euro 2016 will remember the incredible shift that Jon Walters put in. Walters scored two goals and bossed the Bosnian defence on a triumphant night for Irish football.
You can imagine the sentimental value that Walters attaches to the shirt he wore that night. Today, the former Ireland stalwart revealed he's raffling the jersey for an important cause. Jon's cousin, Peter Brady of Ratoath, aged 42, died tragically recently in Perth, and left behind a wife and a young child. This is Jon's way of trying to raise money for them.
"I'm going to raffle my shirt that I wore during the Ireland Vs Bosnia Euro 2016 Qualification playoff match, 16th November 2015"
"We won 2-0 to qualify and I scored the 2 goals. No game or shirt means more to me in my career than this one but its significance pales in comparison to the cause and people that I’m trying to help.
"A couple of weeks ago we suddenly lost my cousin Peter Brady from Ratoath who was living in Australia. He was 42 years old and has left behind his wife Mafe and 2-year-old son Cian. Peter was an unbelievably kind-hearted, amazing individual who I was lucky to have spent a lot of my childhood with."
Walters is asking people to donate €5 or £5 (or more if you can afford it) on a GoFundMe page that Peter's family set up to be eligible to win the jersey.
On that page, Peter's family has written the following about his tragic death:
On the 31st of May 2020 Peter Brady tragically passed away in Perth, Western Australia at 42 years of age. That morning Peter was taken from his home in an ambulance but his heart stopped beating before he made it to the hospital. We are heartbroken. They tried to save him but sadly he passed away.
Anyone that knew Peter, will remember him as a warm hearted, caring man. He made us smile and laugh. He was kind and generous. We will miss his hugs. We were blessed to have him in our family, be our friend and in our lives. We loved him for the person he was, for his big heart. Those of us who were lucky enough to have Peter in our lives know the happiness he found when he met Mafe and then became a Dad to Kian. He now leaves them behind. Mafe and Peter were married for 3 years before Peter tragically died and Kian is just 2 years old.
We are fundraising to support Mafe as she adjusts to Peter’s death and raising Kian on her own. All the funds raised in memory of Peter will go to Mafe to support her in this incredibly difficult time and with the challenges she will face without him. Rest in Peace Peter.
Over $29,000 has been donated as of publishing this article and with a bit of help for the Irish football community, a lot more will be raised.