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O'Keeffe Clan

Gathering and Rally

9, 10 and 11 Sept 2016

guided tours, lectures

historical and genealogical exhibitions

cultural and musical events,

buffet banquet Saturday evening
Daniel Joseph O’ Keeffe (Danno)

Danno O'Keeffe - Goalkeeper - Captained O'Rahilly's GAA Club 1936

He was born in 14-02-1907, to Daniel and Mary O’ Keeffe of Fermoy, Cork, he had one brother and two sisters. His parents moved to Tralee, Co. Kerry when he was a young boy. He was educated in the local Christian Brothers School.

He was passionate for Gaelic football since a young age, he started with Tralee Rangers which amalgamated with Strand Street to become Kerins O’ Rahilly’s. He played in his first official team on a Sunday in February in 1926, where he was with a group of other footballers from Tralee CBS, a truck was hired out and off to Killarney they set off to play against ST. Brendan’s in Killarney, Tralee lost the match and on their way home, the truck in which they were passengers overturned and all the players were thrown from it, One was injured and all the other passengers were not hurt seriously.

It was with this club that he won county championship medals in 1933 and 1939. The Kerry team played and won the Junior All Ireland Final in 1930 for which he was the goalkeeper, the following year he won his first All-Ireland Senior medal, it was in the dressing room on the day of the 1931 match against Monaghan that Danno O Keeffe was informed that he was to play in the position as goalkeeper for the first time on a senior team. This was the beginning of his senior inter county career as goalkeeper for Kerry that lasted till 1948, he held a recording breaking seven All Ireland medals until 1986 when Paudi O Shea, Pat Spillane and Ogie Moran passed him with eight, and was honoured as one of the greatest footballers put forward as a candidate for the title of best goalkeeper at that time. The triumph of 1931 was the third in a row for Kerry, Kerry’s first three in a row, in 1932 Kerry’s win was Danno’s (his Nickname which he was known as across the country) when he received his second medal. Danno was on the team when they won another All Ireland title when they beat Cavan after a replay. Kerry captured another set of three in a row from 1939-1941beating Meath and Galway (twice), O’ Keeffe earned his seventh medal in 1946 in a replay match against Co. Roscommon. During the period of 1931 to 1947, Danno played thirteen All-Ireland Finals which included three replays. These included the famous match of 1947 in the New York Polo Grounds in which Kerry met and lost up against Cavan. Danno played in the 1948 All Ireland semi-final against Roscommon, this match was to be his last on the pitch wearing the Kerry Jersey at Croke Park.

During his Gaelic football career which lasted almost twenty years, he won Fourteen Munster Championships medals and Seven All Ireland Medals & two National League winning medals. He played in seven Railway cup finals which resulted in two winning medals, in 1941 when he was the captain and in 1948.

Danno had all the attributes of a tremendous goalkeeper, his ability made him a proficient team player. He received many accolades from the GAA, he was named as Goalkeeper on the GAA Football Team of the Century in 1984, he was voted as Goalkeeper on the GAA Team of the Millennium in 2000, and he had in his possession the most medals till 1986 when his amount was passed out by another GAA player.

He worked for Kerry County Council in Tralee, Kerry and was promoted to the post of Clerical Officer in charge of the staff on the roads division. He was a very popular man and at work and in Tralee town. He remained very loyal & devoted to the game and followed every Kerry County Match throughout his life.

He married a Kerry woman Mary Moriarty from Tralee in 1939, they had one son Donal and one daughter, Maura. He died suddenly in 1967 at his home in Tralee.

danno o'keeffe

Patricia O Keeffe, Newmarket.