Mayo Legend Padraig 'The Flying Doctor' Carney Dies Aged 91

Mayo Legend Padraig 'The Flying Doctor' Carney Dies Aged 91

Padraig Carney died over the weekend in California aged 91.

A Mayo GAA legend, Carney won All-Ireland titles with the county in 1950 and 1951. He was named Man of the Match in the latter game against Meath.

The Swinford native played both midfield and centre-forward for Mayo.

He became known as 'The Flying Doctor' after he was flown home from the US by the county board to play in the 1954 National League semi-final. He was studying medicine in New York at the time.

In America, Carney specialised as an obstetrician and gynaecologist and, according to Keith Duggan's book 'House Of Pain: Through The Rooms Of Mayo Football', he delivered more than 10,000 babies and performed over 2,000 surgeries.

Carney retired from football in his mid-20s, having worn the Mayo jersey for one last time during an exhibition game in New York.

"I knew that would be my last game," he said in House of Pain.

"I was twenty-six years old and I was at the very peak of my career as a footballer. I do believe that Mayo would have won another two All-Irelands if I had stuck around. But I just had no time to dwell on it."

Along with his two All-Ireland medals, Carney also won a National League, four Connacht titles, a Railway Cup and a Sigerson Cup.

His passing leaves Paddy Prendergast as the sole surviving member of the 1951 Mayo team.

Picture credit: YouTube/AIB

PJ Browne
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