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A minute's silence and a show of solidarity for Mickey and Michaela

Tribute paid to Tyrone boss as he attends first county game since daughter’s death in Mauritius.

TYRONE FOOTBALL PLAYERS wore black armbands and the tricolour was flown at half mast at a GAA pitch to pay tribute to Michaela McAreavey yesterday. A minute’s silence was observed to mark the attendance of her father, Tyrone boss Mickey Harte – his first fixture since Michaela was murdered on her honeymoon in Mauritius earlier this month.

The tie between Donegal and Tyrone had already been postponed once in memory of Michaela. The schoolteacher is inextricably associated with the fortunes of the Tyrone team, having never previously missed a match day. When Mickey Harte led the country to All-Ireland victory in 2003, he would not give an interview until daughter Michaela was by his side.

Yesterday, Mickey Harte stood on the sideline at the Edendork pitch, supported by his football panel. After the minute’s silence, he walked to the dugout to a warm round of applause by both the Tyrone and Donegal supporters. The Irish News quotes an Errigal Ciaran club supporter, where Mickey Harte is based, as saying his return to football was very welcome. She said:

It’s very important that he is back today. He is a very brave man.

Mickey Harte later said that he intended to carry on as Tyrone manager, according to the Irish Independent.

A minute's silence and a show of solidarity for Mickey and Michaela
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  • Tribute to Michaela

    Tyrone manager Mickey Harte closes his eyes during the minute's silence for daughter Michaela at yesterday's match against DonegalSource: INPHO/Presseye/Russell Pritchard
  • Tribute to Michaela

    Members of the Tyrone panel comfort manager Mickey Harte during the minute's silence held for his daughter MichaelaSource: INPHO/Presseye/Russell Pritchard
  • Tribute to Michaela

    Mickey Harte speaks with Brian Dooher during Tyrone's game with Donegal yesterday in Edendork.Source: INPHO/Presseye/Russell Pritchard
  • Tribute to Michaela

    Donegal's manager Jim McGuinness shakes hands with Mickey Harte at the Tyrone-Donegal match yesterday.Source: INPHO/Presseye/Russell Pritchard

Pics: INPHO/Presseye/Russell Pritchard

He told assembed reporters that although “life’s different and is going to be different… we have to live with that”. He said that his players had done him and his family proud by playing their hearts out. He said:

That’s all I can ask of them, to give of their best. If anybody does that then you can ask no more.

That’s the best way that we can remember the good times we had in the past and Michaela was very much part of that. And she will be in the future and with the help of God there’ll be better days.

Tyrone won the Dr McKenna Cup match  1-13 to 0-13.