Olaf Pirlo was not the first man to disappear in Antarctica on a quest to reach the South Pole, but his attempt did have many unique elements, which had become necessary in order to capture the public imagination. Ever since Roald Amundsen reached the Pole in December 1911 and Scott and his team perished on their return journey having arrived there a month later, the South Pole had been considered well and truly conquered. For men who still yearned to take up the challenge and raise the funds to do so, there had to be some new slant to the journey, to afford it the title of some form of First.
Tom Crean by GTV
Good Time Villains or GTV for short, are a Dublin based band playing indie folk music. The band originally formed in Perth Australia, when Richie and Mick met and started playing together, then later came back home to Ireland to form the full band with bassist Stephen Caulfield and drummer Carl O Connor.
The band are awaiting the launch of their upcoming EP, which will be entitled GTV, and among the six tracks is the song ‘Tom Crean’. The launch date for the EP is April 17th, and the group have decided to host the event in” The Strawberry Hall Bar”, which is located in the Strawberry Beds in Dublin. The pub is favored by the band due to its renowned reputation for music artists in Dublin. It is not unheard of for some of Ireland’s other finest musicians to be heard playing there and Damien Dempsey, Glen Hansard, Declan O Rourke and the Riptide Movement have all been said to play a couple of tunes in the Strawberry Hall at one time or another.
Listen to ‘Tom Crean’ by Good Time Villains
Only a matter of days before I launched this website in December 2014, Tim Foley from the Kerry Airport Should Be Renamed Tom Crean Airport campaign group, contacted me with a surprising piece of information, regarding Tom Crean’s date of birth.
On the websites Tom Crean page I had stated that Tom was born on July 20th 1877, and should you pick up any publication, relating to the Unsung Hero, it will no doubt quote the same date, as it was always assumed that this was his birthday.
That is until Aileen O Brien d’Arcy – Tom Crean’s granddaughter, contacted Kay Caball of Find Your Kerry Ancestors, and tasked her with tracing Toms ancestors.
Calculate Your Distance From The South Pole
Simply enter the name of your county, or nearest large town or city, to calculate how far away the South Pole is from you.
Tom Crean & The South Pole
Despite his heroics in Antarctic climes, Tom Crean never actually made it to the South Pole. On January 3rd 1912, Tom was only 150 miles from the Pole, when Captain Robert Falcon Scott opted to send him back to base as part of the last support party. Scott’s Polar Party did succeed in reaching The South Pole, but tragically all five men would perish on the gruelling return journey.
As perhaps the fittest and strongest of the eight men who stood within 150 miles of The Pole on the morning of January 4th, before the parties went their separate ways, it is a certainty that Tom Crean would also have made it to the Pole.
The questions are, could he have survived the trek back to base, that claimed the lives of his five comrades, and whether or not he could have done anything to save them? Bearing in mind that the bodies of Scott, Wilson and Bowers were found in their tent, only around 11 miles from a huge, and potentially life saving supply cache, the question is a justified one.
Roald Amundsen had of course beaten Scott and his Polar Party to the South Pole, arriving there on December 14th 1911, around five weeks before Scott. Amundsen and his men were the first humans to stand at The South Pole.