- The cruel COVID-19 has claimed the life of rugby legend Irish priest, Father Frank Caffrey, in Dublin. The 1996 to 2002 St Mary’s school bursar, helped strengthen school rugby tournaments notably Prescott Cup and Blackrock Festival.
The local rugby fraternity led by Kenya Rugby Union (KRU) chairman Oduor Gangla paid tribute to Caffrey for his valuable contribution to rugby growth.
“We celebrate him for the services he rendered to rugby while at St Mary’s School. We want to join the family in celebrating this great man,” said Gangla.
Gregory Sang, a teacher at St Mary’s School, describes Caffrey as a humble, ever helpful and someone who dedicated his time for the improvement of rugby not only at St Mary’s but also in the country.
Sang, as he recalls that the team had talented players, said that Caffrey was instrumental in the formation of the Kenya School Combined team. The team (Kenya School Combined) toured South Africa just after apartheid ended in 1991 with Caffrey as the team manager.
“Father Caffrey was so passionate about rugby that he used to refund to them money used as transport by coaches and team managers, who came for meetings to plan for Prescott Cup and Blackrock Festival at St Mary’s School. The two school championships were struggling and he is the one who revitalized them,” Sang explained.
According to Sang, Caffrey visited the country last in 2017 and hinted about retiring from his pastoral duties owing to some heart ailment. “We want to sincerely convey our condolences to the family of Caffrey,” said Sang. “We want to thank him for his services,” he added.
Sang also acknowledges the good work of the Irish priest tied to the success of St Mary’s School. He explained that it was during that time St Mary’s dominated to win back-to-back Black Rock Festival from 1994 to 1999 besides winning Prescott Cup also back-to-back from 1995 to 1999.
The rugby fraternity has lost a great manager, a hero and a legend in Caffrey but his good work seems to live on even after his passing on.