Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Matt’s Memories

Ballymore Echo
In the seventies, the Ballymore Echo ran a successful series called “Profiles”. This involved interviews with people in the area at that time. Jimmy McLoughlin of Bolabeg along with P.J. Rudden (former Engineer with the Filter Beds) did the interviews. The late John Murphy of Longhouse took over from P.J. Rudden when P.J. left the Filter Beds. This month, we have featured Patsy Murphy’s profile in The Bugle

Did Peadar Kearney, writer of the Soldier’s Song, live in the Ballymore Eustace area at one time and, if so, where? It has been suggested to me that he may have lived where the late Paddy Monaghan lived at Bishopland. I can be contacted by email at

Billy Hillis
While Billy Hillis had no luck this time in the local elections he was nevertheless quite upbeat as he had made a good recovery from his health difficulties. Continued good health to him.

Pat Smith’s Presentation
Pat Smith retired from South Dublin County Council recently. A Presentation to him was made on September 17 and was well attended. Pat is a good Kildare GAA supporter and was originally from Monasterevin.

Thanks to my late father who was a GP, I had been in Valleymount on a number of occasions in my youth. In his younger days, our late Parish Priest, Monsignor Maurice Browne, was a Curate in Valleymount. The Byrne sisters, Ellen and Margaret, hailed from Valleymount and both played with Dublin County Council’s soccer team - 11CC. Ellen married Shay Weafer, also of the Council, who sadly died young. While re-visiting old haunts with my brother James, I’m pretty sure I saw Margaret taking a stroll as we went through Valleymount. Shortly after my departure from the Law Department of the South Dublin County Council, Valleymount resident, Carol Barry, joined it. Since then I have had the pleasure of meeting Carol on a number of occasions.

Mary Therese
Before I had my stroke, I used regularly see Mary Therese McEvoy doing her shopping in Ballymore Eustace. Not having seen her of late, I was concern about her state of health but I gather she is still in good form.

Edward Delaney
Reading of the death of Edward Delaney in September 2009, aged 79, reminded me that he designed the World Handball Trophies in 1970 that were played at the then new Croke Park 60 by 30 alley. Pat Kirby playing for America won the singles title beating the reigning champion, Joey Maher, playing for Canada while Dick Lyng and Seamus Buggy of Wexford won the doubles title.

Tom O'Rourke met Enda Timoney at the recent handball All-Ireland finals and passed on Enda’s good wishes to me. For the benefit of those who may have forgotten, Enda has contributed many photos to Áine Ryan’s handball website referred to in my September article.

Having attended the Vigil Mass in Ballymore Eustace, Kevin Keenan snr kindly walked down over the Bridge with me while we chatted before his daughter, Theresa Nugent, gave Kevin a lift back to his car.

The death of Mary (Mona) Nugent (nee McLoughlin) of Briencan occurred on September 20 R.I.P. Her husband Patrick and her son Pat predeceased Mona. Pat died three months ago. Having sympathised with Mona’s family, I got talking to her sister Rose who came over from England for the funeral. Rose recalled my late father visiting her family in times past. Maureen Evans, Eileen Gordon and Pat O'Toole were all in the same seat as myself in the Church. Pat, one of my racing friends from the Two-Mile-House direction, gave me a great greeting. I met Madge Tyrrell (nee Nugent) and the late Joe Nugent's wife. This time Madge introduced me to her husband and daughter. Met the O'Rourkes - Rita, Tom and Jacinta, Helen Dreelan's sister and I saw Monsignor John Wilson for the first time as he officiated at the ceremony. Tutsy Holloway was there, along with her sister Phyllis, who came a long way to be present. Renowned horse trainer, Jim Bolger, who used to live on Barrack Street, was there.
The death of my good friend, Elizabeth (Liz) O’Connor-Deegan (at home) of Bushfield Lodge, Bishopsland after a long illness occurred on October 12, 2009 R.I.P. Her husband Eamonn, daughters Eimear and Orlagh, son Eamonn, sisters - Máire, Mairead, Sheila, Sr. Catherine and Christine, brothers - Pat, Seamus, Martin and Leo, grandson Ciarán, sisters-in-law, brothers-in-law, nieces, nephews, relatives survive Liz. Her brothers - Eamonn, Charlie and Liam predeceased Liz.
Joining me in the Church were Jim and Kay Nolan of Elverstown. There was a colossal crowd at the reception of the remains as was the case at the Requiem Mass. I met her brother Pat and Eamonn’s brothers, Tommy and Vincent, Vincent’s wife, Julie (nee Lee), sisters Mary, Margaret and Trish Lehart. Earlier in the day, I visited Dr. Anne Early (Ophthalmic Physician) who previously had lived at Poulaphouca and intended going to Liz’s funeral. Afterwards, I met Caroline Deegan (nee Lee).
When Eamonn and Liz got married in 1978 in Valleymount, I had the honour of being there and afterwards, at their reception in Keadeen Hotel. Eamonn had his 50th Birthday Party in Valleymount, which was organised by Liz who also organised all the details of her funeral. At the Requiem Mass, all those present received a lovely leaflet, which included a photo of Liz. Liz was a great cook and gave classes in Cordon Bleu cooking at Bushfield Lodge.
The death of Edward Good (38) occurred skydiving in Canada on Monday, October 12 – Edward was the eldest son of Dr John Good who worked for a time in Ballymore Eustace.
© Matt Purcell (November 9, 2009)

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