Former Newbrige Town Councillor and Mayor of Kildare Micheal ‘Spike’ Nolan has paid tribute to his late father Michael ‘Spike’ Nolan’ who passed away from a heart attack on Sunday, June 29 last writes Paula Campbell.
The former goal keeper for Kildare and local Fine Gael councillor had been battling Alzheimer’s for the past 10 years. ‘Spike’ Sr was described by his son as a “proud Newbridge man” who left behind a 40 year public service legacy.
“He died shortly after 5pm in the nursing home,” said Mr Nolan. “He had a heart attack and went very quickly in the end. He left a legacy spanning 40 years from 1967 to 2007 serving the people of Newbridge. He had the honour of being Mayor of Newbridge three times and he was Mayor of Kildare in 1993-94. He played in goal for Kildare in the 1950s and was part of the 1956 Leinster team in the National League.”
It was around this time that he earned the nickname ‘Spike’ as goal keeper for the wining Kildare team against Kerry in a National League game in 1956.
“He was in goals at the time and in the zone - nothing was getting past him,” he added. “The following day there was a piece in the paper with the headline ‘Kerry undone - Spiked by Nolan’ so that is where it started. It is a family heirloom now. My brothers Kevin and Brian both played in goals for Kildare and were known as ‘Spike’. I didn’t go on to play for Kildare but I did go into politics in his footsteps.”
Mr Nolan is survived by his wife Ursula, his sons Kevin. Brian and Micheal and his daughter Ann and also his own mother Cathleen.
“He was in Ashley Lodge nursing home for the past five years and he wanted for nothing,” Micheal added.
“The care and attention that he got there was a great source of comfort for the family. I was down town watching the football yesterday [Sunday] when my mum rang me but I was not expecting to get the call. He was so proud to be a public representative. He gave 40 years of service to the people of Newbridge. He was a very proud Newbridge man.”
Tributes were also paid to the late ‘Spike’ Sr at the Kildare County Council meeting held on Monday.The late Cllr Nolan was a county councillor from 1991 to 2007. Mayor Fiona O’Loughlin described his as a charismatic figure who worked very hard on behalf of the people of Newbridge. Cllr Brendan Weld said that he had given great service to Sarsfields GAA.
The removal to St Conleth’s Church will place on Tuesday evening at 6pm which will be followed by funeral mass and burail on Wednesday, July 2 at 11am. Family flowers only, please. Donations, if desired, to the Alzheimer’s Society.