Twenty-eight years after they first met in Ballycotton, a Liverpool running couple recently returned to the seaside village to celebrate their silver wedding anniversary, writes John Walshe.
John Kelly and Michelle McGrath travelled over for the Ballycotton ‘10’ Road Race in 1991, both as members of two different Liverpool running clubs. Staying in Seaspray Guesthouse in the village, love blossomed and three years later they married – and even spent part of their honeymoon back where their romance began.
Although born in the UK, with a name like Kelly there is no doubt that Irish ancestry figures greatly in John’s background. “My grandfather was from Pontoon in County Mayo, my dad was born in England but was back in Ireland within five days. I started running at school aged 11 and then I joined Liverpool Harriers where we had some very good runners such as John Woods [Irish Olympian] and Geoff Smith [twice winner of the Boston Marathon],” he recalls.
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