It was a lucky week for Mayo on the Winning Streak game show, as one lucky woman, Marian Connell from Kilmaine, spun the wheel and won a whopping €61,000 while playing for her mum. During the game the name of another Mayo man - John ‘Murt’ Hunt, from Ballyhaunis was pulled out to appear on the show this Saturday, November 25.
Marian Connell proved her devotion to her mother by appearing on her behalf on the game show and done her so proud as she won €25,000 after spinning the iconic Grand Prize Wheel – taking her total for the show of €61,000. Included in this tidy sum is a holiday to the gorgeous Venice in Italy and a brand new Ssang Yong Tivoli car! Her mother Kate Kelly could not have been prouder of Marian and says she will get her daughter a nice surprise. Before the show Marian, said there isn’t a woman alive that deserves the opportunity for a nice win more than her mother who reared a large family.
Marian (44 ) was supported by her husband of 21-years James and their two children Shauna (17 ) and Ruby (3 ) and five of her seven siblings. Marian leads a busy life and as well as caring for her mother she helps look after her brothers Noel and Sean, who both have Down’s syndrome and were thrilled to see Marian doing so well. Kate will spend any winnings on home improvements and share it amongst Marian and her six siblings.
48-year-old John Murtagh Hunt or ‘Murt’ as he is best known, from Ballyhaunis, was in the middle of a family dinner in a Ballina restaurant last week when he stepped outside to take a call. It was a neighbour to tell him the good news – that he was selected to go on Winning Streak! The family were together for the special occasion of the wedding of Murt’s youngest daughter, Aine who got married the day before to partner Alan. Murt says that after the wedding, he is a man who could do with topping up the balance in the bank account so his Winning Streak appearance could not have come at a better time.
As well as Aine, Murt has six adult children: Marie, Carmel, Noelle, Sean and Murty jnr. He also has seven grandchildren who he adores. Murtagh is his middle name and is a traditional name for the Hunt family spanning many generations.
It has been a week of celebrations for Murt as his daughter Marie Hunt, this week, won Management Professional of the Year. Marie is executive director and head of research and consultancy at CBRE Ireland. All his children, bar Aine, will be supporting Murt in the audience on Saturday night. With any winnings Murt says he wants to help his family out and would very much like a brand new car.
Murt began his working life as a farmer, then worked for Guinness in their Ballyhaunis depot. He then moved into advertising and then went back to farming, what he still does now, joking “I’m working harder than ever now!”