A personal tribute to Philip Hogarty, from Darren McCabe
The past few days have been hard for everyone who has had the pleasure to know Phil. I first met Phil in primary school. I was already playing a while and was board 1 on the school team. Then one day a small and rather shy nine-year old came to the school chess club. I played him and lost, something that would happen a lot over the next ten years. This is my first memory of Phil, playing him over a chessboard.
Chess was Phil’s passion. He loved the game more than any other person I know. He traveled up and down the country and across the world to play the game he loved. On the board he was ruthless in his pursuit of victory. Off the board he was the most genuine and down to earth guy you’re likely to ever come across. He was always up for a laugh, a few pints and a game of blitz.
Over the years, both of us developed a rivalry which brought out the best in us. We tried so hard to get one over the other. This undoubtedly made us grow as both chess players and friends.
Phil was very popular. He made friends effortlessly wherever he went. He was mature beyond his years and his warmth shone out to everyone. He had a great sense of humour and was always cracking jokes. He meant so much to everyone he knew and I know he will be dearly missed by all of his friends.
Irish Chess has lost a top bloke, a great player and an even better friend. I’ve lost my greatest rival and a great friend. Chess will never be the same again for me.
Phil, I’ll never forget you.