Greenpark FC founder had a passion for football

By Aideen O'Flaherty

THE FOUNDER of Greenpark Football Club, Austin Reid, who unexpectedly died on Tuesday, September 11, was fondly remembered by his family, friends and the club for the positive impact he had on the community and his unwavering passion for football.

Austin Reid set up Greenpark FC in 1980, one year after he had moved into the area, to address the lack of sporting clubs in the newly built area.

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Greenpark FC founder Austin Reid

An experienced footballer, Austin had previously played League of Ireland football for Transport Football Club and delighted in sharing his footballing passion with the schoolboys in the area when he managed the schoolboy team.

His son, Paul, told The Echo: “He had a love of football from when he was a boy, and with that passion he basically gathered up every 10- to 12-year-old boy in the area and moulded them into footballers.

“He founded the schoolboy team in 1980, and within two years they’d won the Under-12s league and cup. He set up the senior team in 1984 and continued to be manager and chairman for the club.”

Greenpark FC merged with Greenhills Boys’ Football Club in 2010, and Paul said that over the years many of the footballers had “developed a huge admiration and love for [Austin]”.

Outside of football, Austin liked to  holiday in the West of Ireland, usually hitting the road without any pre-organised itinerary or accommodation set up.

Austin also had a large collection of photos and books about Kilmainham in the 1940s, which resonated with him as he grew up in nearby Inchicore during that time.

An exceptional father

Paul described Austin as “an exceptional father”, and said: “I was looking at family photographs last week and realised that I don’t have a bad memory of him – they’re all good memories.

“He had a great sense of humour and everybody that met him loved him. He had a natural likeability.”

Austin passed away at 83 years of age, and is survived by his wife May, his children Paul, Maurice, Austin, Paschal, Irene and Gary, and his many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

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