Billy Page - A Tribute
William (Billy) Page
1927 – 2021
The word “legend” is an often overused term in today’s language.
However, none could be more deserving of the true meaning of the word than Billy Page.
Billy was a true inspiration to several generations of players, managers and committee members of Dunseedy Utd and latterly Raheny Utd for whom he served with distinction for over 50 years.
In fact, it was Billy’s foresight and vision along with a small group of like-minded individuals which led to the amalgamation of Raheny Boys and Dunseedy Utd to form Raheny Utd, one of the foremost junior clubs in Dublin if not the country. But it was with Dunseedy Utd that Billy is most associated.
I personally had the pleasure of serving with him on several committees stretching back to the early seventies.
His love of and dedication to the club was infectious and he played no insignificant part in the construction of the original single storey clubhouse which was opened in 1983. He was a most effective club Secretary and a great role model for us young enthusiastic but inexperienced clubmen.
Billy along with his close friend, neighbour and fellow Executive member Christy McEvoy were like father figures to us and would often lend a sympathetic ear or impart some wisely words to anyone who sought or needed them. They were trusted mentors of the highest calibre. The pair of them would regularly put up the nets on Pitch 4 on Sunday mornings in advance of the first team’s match. Christy was particularly fussy about how the nets were hung ensuring that they were properly secured and that there were no gaps or faults prior to the referee’s inspection.
Billy always took on the linesman’s duties, a role he undertook with total impartiality and fairness (most of the time).
But it was Billy’s quiet diplomacy that was his greatest talent. He could diffuse the most heated argument with a few well-chosen softly spoken words.
As Club Secretary he was a regular visitor to the AUL HQ to answer charges of sending’s off by players or lodging protests etc and it was Billy’s unassuming and affable personality not to mention his talented negotiating skills that would win over Messrs Hyland and McDermott (AUL top officials) where other individuals failed.
When Dunseedy and Raheny Boys joined forces in 1994 Billy’s influence continued to drive Raheny Utd forward in a positive direction. He served as a Trustee and sat on several committees and working groups with distinction. He attended every AGM and would always make an honest and wise observation on how the club was doing.
Pre covid era he would always enjoy a small brandy (or two) to whet the appetite on a Sunday morning with his son-in-law Johnny and Grandson Paul both equally committed clubmen. Of course, his granddaughter Kate is also involved in the club. Billy always had a keen sense of humour and had a sharp wit and loved a bit of banter with players and fellow members on his visits to the club.
The club has lost two of its esteemed members in recent months, Billy and another ex Dunseedy and Raheny Utd stalwart Ger Kelly who passed from us in December.
I have no doubt that they are both reminiscing on the good old days along with other much loved club members who have departed this world.
The Committee, players, managers and members of Raheny Utd extend their sincere condolences to Billy’s family, extended family, friends and neighbours at this sad time.
Ar dheis Dé to raibh a anam
Raheny Utd FC