Irish Olympian, Jim McNamara dies aged 76

Eamon Coughlan described the runner as "a huge inspiration"

Irish Olympian, Jim McNamara dies aged 76

Image: http://www.donoreharriers.com/

Tributes have been paid to Irish Olympic runner Jim McNamara who has passed away at the age of 76.

McNamara represented Ireland in the Olympic marathon at the 1976 Montreal games and competed in the 1966 European Championships in Budapest.

He was a member of Donore Harriers for 50 years, in a time when they dominated long and middle distance running in Ireland.

In a statement today, Donore Harriers referred to him as “a great athlete, a great friend, a gentleman and a wonderful clubman.”

Tributes have poured in from around the country, including Irish Olympian, Eamonn Coghlan.

"Jim McNamara will probably go down as Ireland’s greatest ever Masters Athlete" said Athletics Ireland chairman, Pat Hooper.

"Jim was also a great coach and was always ready to part his knowledge to anyone who cared to listen."

 Funeral arrangements will be released in due course.