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Obituaries

Clare Champion Obituaries

Council in shock over sudden death of senior engineer

A CLOUD of gloom hung heavily over Clare County Council this week following the sudden death of senior engineer Sean Ward. The 63-year-old Abbeyfeale native, who moved to live in Sixmilebridge after joining the council in 2001, fell ill on Saturday and died unexpectedly last Monday morning. At his funeral mass, Bishop Emeritus Willie Walsh paid tribute to the major contribution that Mr Ward made to public service and to the local community, through his musical talents with the Sixmilebridge Folk Club. Musicians from throughout the county played various pieces in his memory during a moving and emotional ceremony attended by a large number of officials from Clare County Council and other local authorities where he previously worked. An accomplished accordion and concertina player, he could play a variety of instruments, including the fiddle, tin whistle and piano. Funeral goers were told that the deceased had expressed a wish to donate all of his instruments to his beloved folk club. …

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Death of Glór director

GEMMA Carcaterra, who served as director of Glór since 2011, has died suddenly. Helen Rackard, chair of the board of Glór said, “She will be very sadly missed by those who worked with her. We extend our deepest sympathies to Gemma’s husband, Colm Clarke, her three children, Ava, Rióna and Coen, to her parents, Rosa and Rob and to her brothe,r James.” Originally from England, Gemma lived in Ireland for several years and had also worked with Daghda Theatre in Limerick. Councillor Mary Howard, a member of the Board of Glór, said, “This is devastating news for everyone associated with the arts community in County Clare. Her enthusiasm for her role at glór was infectious and she was very proactive, as well as having a close working relationship with members of the Board.   “Gemma was a very special lady. I recall with fondness the day she informed me that not only was she pregnant but she was carrying triplets, …

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Death of Ballynacally/Lissycasey priest

The death has occurred peacefully at his home of Fr Tom O’Dea, assistant priest, Ballynacally/Lissycasey. Born on December 16, 1933 in Newmarket-on-Fergus, he was a pupil of St Flannan’s College, Ennis and he studied for the priesthood at St Patrick’s College, Carlow.He was ordained a priest for the Diocese of Tucson, Arizona on June 7, 1958. Fr Tom served in various parishes in Tucson Diocese and later in Phoenix Diocese, including St Thomas the Apostle Parish in Phoenix, Queen of Peace Parish in Mesa, St Anthony of Padua Parish, Casa Grande; St Francis Parish in Superior, St Patrick Parish in Bisbee, St John Vianney Parish in Goodyear, St Matthew Parish in Phoenix, Christ the King Parish in Mesa and Holy Spirit Parish in Tempe. He retired after serving as pastor of Ascension Parish in Fountain Hills in 2003. After his return to Ireland he served as assistant priest in the Parish of Ballynacally/Lissycasey. He died peacefully at his home in …

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A pioneer in education – the late Professor Peadar Cremin

THE death occurred on Monday of the former president of Mary Immaculate College, Limerick, Professor Peadar Cremin, who played a pioneering role in the development of third level education in the Mid-West. A native of Kerry, Professor Cremin taught in Scoil Íosagáin, Farranree, Cork from 1969 to 1976.He joined the staff of Mary Immaculate College in 1976 as a lecturer in the Education Department. From 1978 to 1998, he lectured in Social and Environmental Studies and was responsible for the organisation of teaching practice. From 1994 to 1999, he was the Acting Head of Education. In 1999, Professor Cremin was appointed as the first lay president of the college in 101 years. Over the term of his presidency, the college community expanded dramatically with, by the time of his retirement in 2011, over 3,000 students enrolled on 30 different academic programmes at undergraduate, postgraduate and doctoral levels. Professor Cremin contributed hugely to the development of the college, including the growth in student …

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Remembering an bean chairdín

DYMPNA O’Sullivan of Frure, Lissycasey, was laid to rest last Sunday, after a two-year battle with cancer, which took her life at 49 years. What a difference a year makes. Dympna was preparing to launch her second album, Enriched – Saibhriú, in The Old Ground Hotel, Ennis, during this week last year. The date was November 29, 2014, to be precise. She was excited, proud, and her new album reflected a change in outlook for Dympna O’Sullivan. The album was a statement. Working hard throughout her remission, Dympna was determined to finish the album and enjoy the experience, while she still felt well enough. “This was going to be from the heart,” Dympna’s family explain. Saibhriú features four of Dympna’s compositions. Na Crocáin Árda harks back to her childhood and the freedom she, her brothers and sisters enjoyed playing and running around the fields of Frure. Resilience, Dympna’s poignant slow air, charts her life after diagnosis. It is about the …

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Widespread shock at sudden death of Pat Cotter

News of the sudden death of Doonbeg native, Pat Cotter has caused widespread shock throughout the county. A former priest in the diocese, the 69-year-old retired from ministry a decade ago. Particularly well-known in Gaelic football circles, he won six senior championship medals with his beloved Doonbeg, being part of the three-in-a-row teams in 1967, 1968 and 1969 and again in 1972, ‘73 and ‘74. He also won six Cusack Cup medals. He played at all levels for Clare and served as a mentor with a number of Clare teams, including the senior football side. He served as a Munster Railway Cup selector. He played football with Maynooth College and he played with Wolfe Tones, when he was based in Shannon for a spell. His love of football and, particularly, Clare football was reflected in his involvement in various committees that worked to promote the game. He served on the Clare Football Support Group, which raised funds that led to …

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The passing of a Champion gentleman

THE death took place on Monday of Flan Galvin, Fuinseog, Tobartaoscáin, Ennis. Aged 86 years, he was a member of the well known family associated with the The Clare Champion newspaper since it was first published in 1903 and was its managing director for almost 30 years, until his retirement in 1994. A proud Kilnamona man and a member of the Galvin family from Caherbanna, he was the last surviving member of a family of seven, whose parents were John and the former Catherine Kennedy. Flan received his primary education locally and continued his school years at St Flannan’s College, Ennis. After leaving school, he became a member of The Clare Champion staff, then under the management of his aunt, Nellie Galvin. He was employed as a photographer and linotype operator and the experience gained in the editorial section and production end supported him in his new role as managing director in 1967, following the death of his aunt. Under …

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Death of former MD of Clare Champion

The death has taken place, peacefully at Ennis General Hospital, of the former Managing Director of The Clare Champion, Mr Flan Galvin of Fuinseog, Tobartaoscain, Ennis. A native of Kilnamona, Mr Galvin, who worked as a staff photographer in the ‘Champion, took over the running of the newspaper in 1969 following the death of his aunt, Mrs Nellie Galvin. Mr Galvin retired from business in 1994 and was succeeded at the helm by his son, John. His remains will repose at his residence this Tuesday from 5pm to 7pm arriving to Ennis Cathedral on Wednesday for Funeral Mass at 12.30pm followed by private cremation. Predeceased by his wife, Gemma who died last January, Mr Galvin is survived by his sons, Anthony, John and David; daughters-in-law, Cathy, Shelly and Kim; grandchildren, Sam and Caitlin, nephews, nieces, relatives and friends. Family flowers only, donations, if desired, to the Clare Branch of The National Council for the Blind. As a mark of respect, …

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Death of Frank Healy

The death has taken place, after a short illness, of Frank Healy, a leading light in Clare soccer. A native of Kilmaley, Frank was vice chairman of the Clare soccer league at the time of his death which occurred at Ennis General Hospital. He had been the driving force behind Kilmaley soccer club for many years but also found time to serve in a variety of positions with the Clare league. During his time as Clare league chairman, he was instrumental in the purchase of land in Doora where the county soccer grounds is now developed. He also served as registrar with the Clare league for a number of years. As a mark of respect, all junior soccer games in Clare were cancelled last weekend.    

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Colum Callinan laid to rest

A SLOW-moving and ever-lengthening queue filled Kilmihil village on Sunday evening, as people travelled from all over Clare to pay their respects to the late Colum Callinan. The 23-year-old passed away at Cork University Hospital last Thursday, following a single vehicle accident on Sunday, March 15. The silence of those queuing outside O’Halloran’s Funeral Home was indicative of how shocked mourners were and this was reflected in the days before and since throughout Kilmihil. A very talented footballer and free taker, Colum represented Kilmihil with pride and gusto. He was also part of the Clare U-21 panel in 2013 and played football for LIT during his days there as a student. Kilmihil GAA field is no more than a free kick removed from the funeral home where Colum was laid out and as the March breeze cut through the village, the sight of the field in such proximity added to the poignancy of the evening. “Colum made an immense contribution …

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