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Cushendall teens recognised in the 2020 Electric Ireland GAA Minor Special Recognition Awards


Michael Quinn, Josh Schnell, Shane McKenna, and Niall Óg McGuigan from Ruairí Óg Cushendall GAA club have been awarded the Ulster Electric Ireland GAA Minor Special Recognition Award for their brave efforts in saving the lives of a young family who had gotten into distress while swimming on the beach.

Electric Ireland has today unveiled the winners of the 2020 Electric Ireland GAA Minor Special Recognition Awards, which sees Minors from all four provinces of Ireland being honoured for their outstanding off-the-pitch contributions in their communities during 2020.


Colm Cavanagh, 2004 All-Ireland winning Minor, and one of the judges for the Special Recognition Awards, was on hand to announce the award recipients this morning.

Having missed out on a host of coming-of-age moments over the past 11 months, including the culmination of the Electric Ireland GAA Minor Championships, these unique Electric Ireland GAA awards have taken into consideration the difficulties experienced in 2020 by players and communities across the country, and aim to bring a major moment back into the lives of this age group.


The awards were judged by All-Ireland winning Tyrone Minor, Colm Cavanagh, former Minor Kilkenny forward, Aidan Fogarty and representatives from the GAA and Electric Ireland.

Antrim’s Michael Quinn, Josh Schnell, Shane McKenna, and Niall Óg McGuigan from Ruairí Óg Cushendall GAA club have been awarded the Ulster Electric Ireland GAA Minor Special Recognition Award for their brave efforts in saving the lives of a young family who had gotten into distress while swimming on the beach.


In June 2020, the four teenagers from St. Killian’s College had been enjoying a day at White Park Bay when they noticed the young family had gotten into difficulty while in the water. Thinking quickly and courageously, the boys rushed into the water and successfully prevented a certain tragedy.


Speaking about the award winners, Edel McCarthy, Head of Sponsorship & Brand at Electric Ireland stated: “Electric Ireland is delighted to recognise these Minors with an Electric Ireland GAA Minor Special Recognition Award for their outstanding contribution to society in 2020. In what has been an extremely challenging year, the winners have stood up, put other’s needs first and have positively impacted their local communities.”


Uachtarán CLG John Horan said; “On behalf of the GAA, I would like to congratulate each of the Electric Ireland GAA Minor Special Recognition Award winners. These awards showcase that the GAA is not just about what happens on the pitch, but that the community is at the heart of everything that we do. These young men are a credit to the Association, their clubs, their families, their schools and, most of all, themselves. We are delighted to support these Electric Ireland GAA Minor Special Recognition Awards and thank Electric Ireland for their continued support for this age group.”


Former Tyrone footballer, Colm Cavanagh added: “I was very proud to be on the judging panel for these Electric Ireland GAA Minor Special Recognition Awards. All of these young men have shown incredible initiative and bravery, as well as maturity beyond their years, and they should be very proud of themselves. I am delighted that Electric Ireland and the GAA have recognised their efforts and the incredible impact which they have had on their communities in 2020. While we hope that they can get back on to the pitch soon, they have demonstrated what the GAA is truly about.”







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