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Emotional Jim McGuinness Recalls Vividly The Moment He Decided To Become A Footballer

Emotional Jim McGuinness Recalls Vividly The Moment He Decided To Become A Footballer
By Conor Neville

Jim McGuinness spoke about the deaths of his two brothers, Charles and Mark, on the Late Late Show last night. It was the death of Charles that inspired Jim to become a footballer.

Charles died from a heart defect aged 16.

We heard a shout from the room and ran in to see what was going on. He had a heart condition and there was no trace of it ever before.

He was somebody who I felt was really, really cool and someone I looked up to. He was a beautiful looking boy and a great manner about him, great work ethic, cared a lot about his appearance and worked really hard in the family business. And he was a great footballer and I really looked up to him from that point of view.

Charles' friends arrived into the house shortly after his death and they were reminiscing about him in front of the television.

One of them, I think it might have been Eoin McConnell, said it's terrible because he would have been a sure thing for the county minors. I remember just them words and I remember staring at the television and I kept saying 'I am going to do that'.

The family were hit with another tragedy years later. Following the 1998 Ulster Final which Donegal lost to a late Joe Brolly goal, Jim was offered the chance to head out to the US for the remainder of the summer.

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His brother and best friend Mark was driving him to the airport when their car collided with a truck. Mark was killed instantly.

I remember thinking the lorry was out of control and he slowed down. Cut into his own side of the road and then just as the lorry was passing us it came straight across the road and took us out of it. And that was it. We were flung really like a matchbox, up the road and spun so many times...

I just told him repeatedly that I loved him.

Read more: Kilkenny's All Ireland Defence Has Already Been Given A Welcome Boost

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