Finn Valley mourns death of John Carlin, Crossroads, Killygordon

john the rate

ST PATRICK’S church, Crossroads, Killygordon was packed to overflowing this morning (Thursday) for the funeral of well-known sportsman and one of the founding members of the Finn Valley Athletic Club, John Carlin.

He died peacefully at Letterkenny General Hospital on Monday afternoon aged 83.

Known affectionately as John ‘the rate’, he was a hugely popular figure in the local community and had been ill for some time.


A deeply religious man, Mr Carlin also generously gave his time to the local branch of St Vincent de Paul.

He was instrumental in the setting of the Finn Valley AC in 1972 and, indeed, was an accomplished athlete himself.

When he was 12 years old, he won the Ulster youth cross country title in Armagh.

An excellent high jumper, he went on to hold the Irish record for a long number of years until his oldest son Sean came along and broke it.

He was involved in the promotion of athletics for many years. He officiated at schools events in the seventies and even held a meet in the field he owned next to his home at the cross.

On the night of his 80th birthday, he was installed as an honorary member of FVAC.

His athletics genes were not lost on his children and grandchildren, his four sons played for the famous Red Hughs team of the 1990s.


Marty also starred for Donegal for many years and Sean competed for Ireland at major international events.

Beloved husband of Eileen and much loved father of Sean, Eugene, Marty, Joe, Declan, Deirdre and Bernie and much loved brother of Seosie and Bridget.

He is also survived by sons-in-law, daughters-in-law, brother-in-law, sisters-in-law, grandchildren, nephews, nieces and a wide circle of family and friends.

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