McGrath, Here it is, Lament for John Joe O` Reilly. God rest you John Joe O`Reilly, `neath each cold November air, As the grey dust falls so quickly round the plains of old Kildare. God rest and keep you John Joe may your memory last in Fame, Throughout each hill in Ulster and your own loved Cornafean. 2 God rest you John Joe Reilly, Neath each bright November star, Where his hero tales are told to-night, by firesides near and far, While by quite lakes in Cavan men can hear the Banshee wail, For the bravest hearts of Breifne and the pride of all the Gael. 3 They will grieve for him in Kerry, throughout Mayo, Louth and Cork, While his comrades go in mourning through the sidewalks of New York, Where the Yankees they did cheer him on that ne`er forgotten day, When victory was found three thousand miles away. 4 God rest you John Joe Reilly, that`s the prayer of royal Meath, But his loss is felt the keenest on his native Ulster heath, Through the length and breadth of Breifne they are singing one refrain, God rest you John Joe Reilly you were the pride of Cornafean. 5 We bless and keep you in our prayers, may he count you with his own, While Ulster mourns your passing from the Ards to Inishowen, God rest you and keep you John Joe and we pray for you to-day, While Cavan lost their bravest man on a cold November
John Joe O`Reilly captained the Cavan Gaelic football team in the Polo Grounds New York in 1947, Cavan beat Kerry in the only All-Ireland Final to be played outside of Ireland. McGrath there are numerous songs connected with sporting heroes of Gaelic games. And thanks for the Johnny Thompson song. Slan Ard Mhacha.