Éire Óg presented three All-Ireland winners from the club with lifetime membership on St Stephen’s Day.
Stephen McNamara, Shane O’Donnell and Davy O’Halloran received the prestigious honour from the Ennis club on the back of their respective achievements in the Clare jersey.
In 1995, Stephen McNamara became the third generation of his family to win an All-Ireland medal. He is the grandson of famous Limerick dual star Jackie Power and nephew of Kerry football legend Ger Power. Stephen scored Clare’s second goal in the 95 semi-final 3-12 1-13 win over Galway.
McNamara was a regular starter at corner-forward for Ger Loughnane’s side when they ended an eighty one search for a missing person by the name of Liam McCarthy. They collected the county’s third All-Ireland senior title two years later defeating Tipperary in the final with Stephen an unused substitute on the day. He retired from inter-county hurling at the end of the 1999 All-Ireland championship ending his career with two All-Ireland and three Munster medals.
Shane O’Donnell’s name will live on in the history books for years and years to come. His contribution to Clare winning their fourth All-Ireland title in 2013 was influential to say the least. O’Donnell was first called up to the senior panel by Davy Fitzgerald at the beginning of the 2013 campaign. He is the holder of one All-Ireland senior medal, two U21 All-Irelands, two U21 Munster medals and one Minor equivalent.
O’Donnell made his championship debut as Clare overcame Waterford in the Munster quarter-final at full-forward scoring an important goal, something he would replicate later on in the year. That he did in a qualifier win over Laois while it was his exploits in the All-Ireland final replay that turned him into a household name. Given a starting role by Fitzgerald for the replay, Shane rewarded his trust in fine style with a man of the match performance netting a hat-trick inside the first nineteen minutes as Clare recorded an unforgettable 5-16 3-16 victory.
Davy O’Halloran was a member of the extended Clare panel in 2013. After impressing for the county’s U21 side, he was brought on to the senior panel at the same time as his Éire Óg clubmate O’Donnell.
It was 2014 before he first featured for the senior side, coming on as a substitute in Clare’s home draw with Wexford in the All-Ireland qualifiers. He departed the senior panel during the 2015 National League and joined the senior football panel where he received more game time. O’Halloran along with his 2013 senior medal, has two All-Ireland U21 medals and was awarded the man of the match award for his display in the 2013 U21 All-Ireland.
The trio were joined by their families, friends and club mates as they received their lifetime membership following a day of activity as they held a St Stephen’s Day tournament.
All pictures by Martin Connolly