The venue was perfect. The Abbey Hotel, Donegal Town was the meeting place for the Boys of ‘92 and they were back in style on Saturday night for the launch of Donal Reid’s autobiography, ‘Confessions of a Gaelic Footballer’.
Close on 400 people packed in to the Sky Nightclub downstairs in the Abbey as the launch was conducted by Shaun Doherty of Highland Radio.
The book, a chronicle of the life of Donal Reid from birth to present day, was officially launched by Anthony Molloy and Frank McGlynn, joining together the two great triumphs of Donegal senior football, All-Ireland senior wins in 1992 and 2012. Donal was one of only two people (the other being Jim McGuinness) who was connected to both - as a player in 1992 and as a physical therapist in 2012.
Among the other speakers on the night were Anastasia Roche from Pieta House (all the proceeds from the book go to this worthy cause); Sean Dunnion, Donegal Co. Board chairman and Maura Reid, Donal’s wife.
Addressing the huge attendance, Donal explained the reason he decided to pen the book.
“The reason why I wrote it at this time is that I feel you can’t write an autobiography until you have lived a life.
“You have people writing autobiographies when they are 19 or 20 and maybe some of them are very good but I feel that until you have lived a life, you cannot write an autobiography.
“I am in the autumn of my life and I feel the time was right.
“I have full confidence that I have not hurt anyone’s feelings in the book.
“I tell it as it is. I tell the truth, there’s no backwaters with me and you will see it when you read it,” said Donal, who referred to many people who had had a big influence on his life, from his parents to his present family.
He was joined on the night by a huge crowd from his local area in Crossroads, Killygordon and Castlefin.
Also there were most of his playing colleagues going back as far as Donegal’s All-Ireland U-21 success of 1982, the Ulster Championship winning side of 1983 and of course the two All-Ireland senior winning teams.
Speaking after the launch, Donal said he was delighted with the turnout. “I was a bit worried that nobody would turn up but I shouldn’t have worried. It was great to see so many of the players from the past here.
“Hopefully, the sale of the book will go well and we can raise much needed funds for Pieta House and their desire to have a Pieta House in Donegal,” said Donal.
The book will be on sale at various outlets throughout the county from this week, or if anyone wants to order a copy of the book they can do so by emailing their request to firstname.lastname@example.org