Yesterday Ireland’s second ever Olympic Gymnast Kieran Behan was presented with a cheque for €20,000 to cover his grant from the Olympic Council of Ireland by Pat Hickey, President of the IOC to help him in his preparations for the London Games. The event took place at Dublin’s prestigious Shelbourne Hotel where Behan was interviewed by the national newspapers, national television and radio broadcaster RTE whilst also posing for a series of photos on the furniture.
Kieran with IOC Secretary General, Dermot Sherlock and IOC President, Pat Hickey.
Coach Demetrios Bradshaw, Gymnastics Ireland Technical & Performance Manager Sally Filmer, Kieran Behan, Pat Hickey IOC President and Kieran’s parents Bernie and Phil Behan.
Kieran Behan receives his cheque from Pat Hickey, IOC President
Just 2 weeks ago, Kieran was unknown to those un-involved in the gymnastics community in Ireland, now, known to all, he is deemed “personification of Olympic Spirit”. Today he graces the front covers of the national newspapers, can be heard speaking on radio interviews and seen on television. It’s a great change from stories of the failing economy, the IMF or the Troika jumping out at us everyday.
Kieran, the boy next door, is in fact the man of the moment right now. By now, everyone knows Kieran’s inspirational story. He is a credit to himself, his coaches, his parents and Gymnastics Ireland – definitely the personification of Olympic Spirit and a true inspiration to the younger generation of gymnasts in Ireland. Below are just a few media highlights from the event yesterday:
Interview with Gareth Makim for the Metro Herald newspaper (click to enlarge):
Front page of the Irish Times newspaper today: