Former ISSC President and Founding Member – Sean Commins R.I.P.

Born in Ireland May 22nd 1943, Sean was raised in Belcare, Galway. Originally he had plans to be a farmer but his teacher sent an application to a trade school and he decided to give it a go. He completed his apprenticeship as an electrician and worked briefly in Ireland before he decided for Canada in the summer of 1967.

He started work in Northern Alberta in the tar fields but one fine morning in January he woke up to a Chinook snow storm. He was puzzled, as the day before it had been quite pleasant. Immediately he packed his bag and headed to the train station for Vancouver. On his first night a few friends had to force him to go out, as he was tired from the trip, and there he met his future wife Eileen. Their two children Brian and Fiona would light up their lives in the years that followed.

After working for BC Hydro and his union he got a job with BC Transit and stayed for almost 30 years as an electrician, not a bus driver! Sean hated having to explain that. His love of gardening saw him grow almost everything. The only flowers he ever loved were the ones that came from a potato crop.

In 1974 he was one of the founding members of the Vancouver Irish and Sporting Club. He served on the executive from 1984 until 1987, first as V-P and then as a three term President. These would turn out to be outstanding years for the club’s Gaelic Football team that would qualify for the North American County Board championships in Boston (1984) and Chicago (1985). Sean took charge of all the backroom dealings in keeping the team competitive.

He had a heart of gold and was a friend to anyone that got to know him. As a youth, I suffered a head butt that broke my nose up in Edmonton during a Gaelic football match. Sean took me to the hospital and stayed throughout all of the medical attention, forgoing the party back at the Irish Centre. He was a good man and an honest Gael. Thank you Sean and “Up Galway!”

John O’Flynn
Rúnaí – Canadian County Board