Munich Air Crash – Death of Billy Whelan – Ronald Reagan – First Casualty of Trouble at Today in Irish History

February 6: TODAY in Irish History:

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Footballer Liam “Billy” Whelan

Snippets of Irish History by Conor Cunneen IrishmanSpeaks 

Conor is a Chicago based Motivational Humorous Business Speaker, Author and History buff.

WATCH: A Short History of Ireland





1877: Colonel John O’Mahoney

Colonel John O’Mahoney,  founding member of the Fenian Brotherhood in the United States dies. O’Mahoney was forced into exile following the failed Young Ireland rebellion of 1848. During the civil war he attained the rank of Colonel in the Fighting 69th Regiment of New York State Militia which was comprised primarily of Irish emigrants. The regiment’s Irish language war cry was ” Fág an Bealach” (Clear the way.)

Colonel John O’Mahoney




1911: Ronald Reagan is born into relative poverty Tampico, Illinois. Reagan’s hard-drinking  father (of County Tipperary roots) was rarely able to hold a job for long, forcing Reagan’s adoring mother Nelle and family to move frequently.

Ronald Reagan in For the Love of Being Irish

This image of Ronald Reagan in For the Love of Being Irish


Reagan visited his ancestral home, Ballyporeen County Tipperary, June 3 1984




1958: Billy Whelan Killed in Munich Air Disaster

The Munich air disaster takes the lives of seven Manchester United players including Dublin born Liam (Billy) Whelan and fourteen others. Fifteen days later, Duncan Edwards whom many regard as the greatest player ever to wear the famous red jersey would die from his injuries.

Twenty-two year old Billy Whelan averaged a goal every two games in less than three years he was with United. In the 1956/57 season, he was the club’s top scorer with 26 goals in just 39 games.

This commemorative stamp of Liam Whelan was issued by the Irish Post Office on the fiftieth anniversary of the Munich disaster. The clock face shows the time of the accident when the BEA plane slid off the freezing runway on its third take off attempt. Partly because of this emotional event and the city’s proximity to Ireland, Manchester United have a huge fan base in Ireland.

The scene after the plane crash


BBC News on Munich Air Crash (includes interview with Dubliner and former United Captain Johnny Carey

See BBC and The Guardian for detailed reports on the Munich air disaster.



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Want to learn more about Ireland? See these images and more in the acclaimed For the Love of Being Irish

Irish gift ideas. Best selling Irish booksRonnie Drew and Luke Kelly - Musical Irish Gifts to the worldJoyce Image in For the Love of Being IrishMichael Collins: Image from For the Love of Being Irish


This history is written by Irish author, business keynote speaker and award winning humorist IrishmanSpeaks – Conor Cunneen. If you spot any inaccuracies or wish to make a comment, please don’t hesitate to contact us via the comment button.

Visit Conor’s YouTube channel IrishmanSpeaks to Laugh and Learn.

Tags: Best Irish Gift, Creative Irish Gift, Unique Irish Gifts, Irish Books, Irish Authors, Today in Irish History TODAY IN IRISH HISTORY (published by IrishmanSpeaks)


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