Mark Smyth Memorial
Mark Smyth - An Appreciation
By Brendan McGlynn
The tragic and untimely death of Mark Smith in a drowning accident in Thailand on the 13th September 04 came as a great shock to those privileged to know him. Mark who was only twenty years of age was the only son of John and Catherine Smith of Annaville Park Dundrum. The Smith family also have a younger daughter Tara.
Death is always sad, but when it strikes at one who is an only son, in excellent health and an exceptionally talented individual, it is particularly poignant. Mark had attended St Olaf’s primary school, as his family lived in Balally Grove at the time. He also attended Oatlands secondary school. Having completed his formal education, he commenced work in his father’s business. After about one year he became self employed in the I.T. industry.
Mark played football with Naomh Olaf GAA Club. He was an exceptionally good player and won division one leagues with the Club. He was selected on a Dublin under fourteen development squad and went on to represent Dublin on under fourteen, fifteen and sixteen football teams.
Mark developed an interest in Karting when he was eleven years of age. His interest in this sport grew and he became All-Ireland Senior “A” Karting champion in 2001. That same year he also won the Ulster Karting Cup Club Championships, the Irish Club Championships, as well as the I.R.L. Plate and also the “O” Plate. He represented Ireland in the Inter Nations team events on three occasions. Because of his interest and success in Karting he was unable to concentrate on his football for a couple of years but he was back playing well for the Club before his death.
While on holidays in Thailand with some friends, Mark was enjoying White Water Rafting when he was accidentally drowned. There was a large and representative attendance at his funeral Mass in Holy Cross Church Dundrum. Naomh Olaf GAA Club provided a Guard of Honour. Following his burial in Shanganagh Cemetery his family invited everybody to a reception in Naomh Olaf GAA Club. With Marks passing his family has lost a treasured member and Naomh Olaf GAA Club has lost one of its brightest prospects.