Kellie Harrington receives warm welcome home

ireland
Kellie Harrington Receives Warm Welcome Home
Kellie Harrington was brought around north inner city Dublin in an open-top bus following her return from the Tokyo Games. Photo: INPHO/Laszlo Geczo
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Muireann Duffy

Updated: 6.15pm. Additional reporting by Sarah Slater.

Crowds have turned out in Dublin's north inner city to welcome home Olympic gold medallist, Kellie Harrington.

Team Ireland's remaining athletes and support staff arrived into Dublin Airport shortly before 1pm on Tuesday, including Harrington and fellow boxing medallist, Aidan Walsh, who were welcomed at the airport by family and friends.

The Five Lamps were lit up in honour of Kellie Harrington's achievement. Photo: INPHO/Laszlo Geczo

Harrington said it was "nice to finally be home", adding she was "delighted to be bringing the gold back to the north inner city".

The area surrounding Harrington's family home on Portland Row had been decorated ahead of her return, with an open-top bus also arranged to bring the 31-year-old and fellow Team Ireland boxer, Emmet Brennan around the area in the absence of a civic ceremony due to Covid-19 rules.

Kellie Harrington with Emmet Brennan on the open-top bus. Photo: INPHO/Laszlo Geczo

The bus started its route in Ballybough at 5pm, proceeding to Gardiner Street, Killarney Street, Portland Row, Sean MacDermott Street, Summerhill, and ending in North Strand, with people lining the roads to cheer on the pair.

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2012 Olympic bronze medallist Michael Conlan takes a closer look at Kellie Harrington's gold medal. Photo: INPHO/Laszlo Geczo

Earlier, Harrington appealed to the public to adhere to social distancing rules in a message delivered through Dublin City Council: "Winning the gold is a huge honour and I’m so grateful for all the support from my family, my local community and my country.

Parts of Dublin's north inner city have been decorated ahead of Kellie Harrington's return. Photo: PA Images

"I’m looking forward to seeing you all again to thank you for the immense support and many kind wishes you’ve sent my way throughout my Olympic journey – I couldn’t have done it without you," she said.

Kellie Harrington was greeted at Dublin Airport by IABA boxers. Photo: INPHO/Laszlo Geczo

"If you’re out celebrating, just remember to stay safe and keep your social distance; we aren’t out of the woods with Covid-19 yet and we need to stick together as a community and look out for each other.

Team Ireland boxer Emmet Brennan's mother, Bernie, awaits the arrival of her son at Dublin Airport. Photo: INPHO/Laszlo Geczo

"I’m looking forward to seeing you all again safely in the coming weeks and months, take care of yourselves and each other," Harrington added.

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