Friday, October 30, 2009

Recent Deaths
The editors of the Ballymore Bugle would like to extend our deepest sympathy to all the families of the deceased
as listed below. There have been many deaths since our last edition and our hearts go out to
the families who are grieving – Rose and Tim

The late Jack Kaine of Glashina was a well known character within farming and equestrian circles and very much involved with St Mary’s community, Blessington and St John’s of Ballymore Eustace. Pre-deceased by his wife, Rhona nee Neale, Jack is survived by his daughter Elizabeth, son James, grandchildren, daughter and son in law and members of the extended family* and pre-deceased by sisters, Nellie and Dorrie who were similarly well known and loved in both towns. Jack was an ardent huntsman in his time, having rode in many a point to point at Punchestown – he even attended this year’s National Hunt Festival reputedly on all six days, despite his failing health. He will be remembered for his warmth and congeniality and as a gentleman – the late Jack Kaine, may he rest in peace, amen.

The late Dermot Byrne, Salthill, Galway and formerly of Ballymore Eustace. A retired Major General in the Irish Defence Forces, Dermot was a son of the late “Master Byrne” and grew up in Tinnycross House. He is survived by his wife Phyllis and children Jim, Deirdre, Nicky and the late Vinny; brother Des who regularly makes trips to Ballymore and keeps in touch via the Ballymore Bugle, sister Molly, brother Terry and pre-deceased by Harry and Séamus, daughters-in-law, grandchildren, relatives and friends. May he rest in peace, amen.
The late Jean Carton, Dunlavin and formerly of Hillcrest, Ballymore Eustace and Ballyfermot, Co Dublin passed away after a short illness. A petite bubbly person, Jean was always upbeat and chatty; she will be sadly missed by her husband, Steve and children Gemma and David; sisters and brothers, sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law, relatives, neighbours and her many friends. There was a huge attendance at the funeral service from her native Dublin home and the rural communities of Ballymore and Dunlavin. Jean’s love of shopping and a hunt for a bargain was humorously referred to during the service which was officiated by Rev Fr McGowan, former parish priest of Ballymore Eustace. A lovely person, the late Jean Carton, may she rest in peace, amen.
The funeral of the late Nicki O’Reilly (nee O'Hea) of Ballycutlane, Coughlanstown and formerly Barrack Street, Ballymore Eustace drew one of the largest attendances ever witnessed in the village with strong representation from members of the racing fraternity. Nicki is survived by her husband Charles who is a Director at Punchestown Racecourse, children Alexandra, James and Harry, members of the extended family and friends. As a mark of respect and a sign of the affection in which she was held, management at the racecourse closed their offices on Friday before her funeral and I understand Kevin Myers dedicated one of his columns to Nicki also. The Late Nicki O'Reilly - may she rest in peace, amen.

The late Jack Murphy - formerly of Main Street, Ballymore Eustace, Comdt. Jack Murphy aged 91 more recently resident in Monkstown, Co Dublin died after a brief illness. He is predeceased by his wife Mary and survived by his daughters Anne, Maire and Oonagh, sons Ivor and John, brother Raymond, sons-in-law, daughters-in-law, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and members of the extended family. Jack's sisters, Dr Laura Murphy and Pat Burke are sadly deceased and were very well known within the local community. May he rest in peace, amen.

The late Manzie Kelly of Barrack Street, Ballymore Eustace and St. Vincent's Hospital, where he died peacefully on August 13th. He will be sadly missed by Marie, Billy, Frank, Henry and Maria and their families, relatives and friends. There was a strong GAA representation at his funeral as Manzie had been a handball player and also a member of the famous 1953 football panel. May he rest in peace, amen.

The late Therese Bolger of Cannycourt, Brannockstown who died peacefully at Tallaght Hospital, deeply regretted by her mother Maisie, sisters Mary, Aine, Kay and Bernadette, , brother Stephen, sister and brothers-in-law, nephews, nieces, relatives and friends. May she rest in peace, amen

The late Joe Cahill of Liffey Heights – aged only 47, his death must have been very hard on family and friends. Survived by wife Bridget and daughter Lisa, brother Matt, sisters Hilda, Bernie and Monica, sisters and brothers-in-law, nieces, nephews, relatives and friends, Joe was a great buddy of the late Noel Hartigan who sadly died at a relatively young age. I had heard Joe had taken ill and was in a coma but I did not hear of his death until after the funeral. Very sad, I remember seeing Bridget (Biddy) and Joe dating and he was the finest looking chap you’d lay eyes on. The late Joe Cahill, may he rest in peace, amen.

We extend our sympathy to the family of the late Davey Byrne, formerly of Hollywood and Blessing ton. Davey had worked in England for many years in the construction industry – a son of the late and very well known character, the “Gunch Byrne”, Davey will be missed by family and friends, may he rest in peace, amen.

We offer our condolences to the family of the late Frank Slattery (71); a brother of Barry, Frank was a large than life character who died suddenly. Frank actually took ill whilst out playing golf and we hear his golfing friends at Newlands Golf Course gave him a terrific send off. He is survived by his wife, Denise and their two daughters plus members of the extended family. May he rest in peace, amen.

- Rose


I am afraid I only managed to read one book over the last month or so- it was so huge I had to save it for when I was sure there would be enough time to finish it – being a slow reader can be a curse at times! However, “The Northern Clemency” by Philip Hensher (Paperback: Harper Perennial: 15.00 euro) was worth the effort and time it took to digest its 738 pages. Nominated for the Man Booker prize last year, it is a very well written novel, spanning two decades in the lives of a couple of middle class families living in Sheffield, South Yorkshire.

Perhaps the fact that it was set in my home city, from 1974 to 94, when I was still living in Northern England particularly endeared the book to me, but I like to think it was also because it is a genuinely good story that gets you involved with the lives of the families right from the start.

Hensher is good at evoking an era and the novel opens in the seventies with the mixed fates of the Glovers and their new neighbours the Sellers, freshly arrived from London. As the book unfolds we gradually get to know all the family members and the depictions of the children and teenagers are particularly good . There are some interesting plot twists, although I did find the occasional explorations of characters on the outside of the family a little diversionary- I think Hensher is at his best when dealing with the main characters themselves.

The emphasis in this novel is, I feel, very much on the story itself. As we get into the mid eighties the backdrop is inevitably the dramatic backdrop of the miners strike and the book provides some interesting social commentary here on the damage done to communities by the divisive strike. Although in each of the eras selected we get very detailed vignettes of each of the family member’s lives, I am conscious that the writer does not delve specifically into their individual psychology- he merely describes what is happening to them. In this way the reader is left to make their own minds up about the character- what appeals to them and what they may dislike.

I admired this quality in Hensher as a writer, but at the end of the novel, I wasn’t sure what I really knew about any of the characters- I knew about their lives and things that had happened to them, but I wasn’t sure exactly what empathy I felt for them- it was slightly odd really! So, although at one level I really enjoyed the actual story and the reality of this tale of Northern life, I was left feeling a little unsatisfied by it- perhaps I would have preferred fewer characters but more depth? I could certainly recommend it as a good yarn, but for me I think it sacrificed a little more depth to its substantial breadth.


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