Padraig Harrington opens up on death of his father ‘way too young’

Jon Rahm Padraig Harrington

“It really was a shame for us and something that as it turned probably was preventable.”

Padraig Harrington opened up on the death of his father “way too young” when speaking on RTE’s Late Late Show on Friday night.

Padraig Harrington.

The European Ryder Cup captain lost his father to oesophageal cancer and spoke to Ryan Tubridy in a bid to raise awareness of the disease.

“To be honest, we lost him way too young. He was only 72 but he was a very fit 72,” Harrington told Tubridy.

“Very active, really everything else about him was fit, healthy and strong. He was really going great guns at that stage.

“It really was a shame for us and something that as it turned probably was preventable.”


Harrington’s father (Paddy) eventually lost his battle with cancer in 2005, two years before the 49-year-old won his first Major.

His son Padraig is now an advocate for the Oesophageal Cancer Fund, which is the national charity dedicated to tackling the disease.

Regarding the symptoms, the three-time Major winner explained what to look out for and how the disease is very treatable if caught early.

“The symptoms are reasonably obvious. It’s persistent heartburn, persistent acid reflux, persistent trouble swallowing, all those things that you’d take indigestion tablets for,” Harrington continued.

“My dad used to live on those tablets and he was a typical Irish dad you know that would just get on with it, keep going and not worry about it.

“It’s something with oesophageal cancer that if you catch it early, it’s very treatable. Like all cancers, if you catch it early, you’ve got a great chance of beating it.”

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Harrington also revealed how preparations are going ahead of the rescheduled Ryder Cup in September. You can watch the full interview here.

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