COILL DUBH’S GATHERING. MAUREEN CUSACK

by jdurney on June 22, 2013

Maureen Cusack remembers

When I first came to live in Cooleragh in 1957, the village had been built but no church existed and mass was celebrated firstly in the middle camp before moving to the Pipe Factory. There was always a very large congregation, which comprised of residents and local parishioners travelling from Timahoe, Blackwood and Hodgestown. Many fundraising events took place in those years to raise funds for the new church, which was opened in 1964.
I have vivid memories of hearing and seeing the senior children from the village who attended school in the camp, playing at break time. Mrs Smith and Mrs Dermody taught there at that time.
When I came to live in Cooleeragh I brought two greyhounds and an Irish terrier with me. Dan Rooney frequently helped out on the farm and after a while Robin asked him if Mike would be interested in walking the greyhounds after school. It wasn’t long before Mike started to invite his pals to help and so began the evening rota comprised of Michael Tracey, Michael, Sean Reilly and John Kenny. Three came each evening. The lads became very fond of the dogs and they all had their favourites.
Andy Casey and Aidan Farrell worked on the farm in the early years. Aidan delivered milk each morning and evening to the village from a two gallon delivery can. We also sold eggs and potatoes each Saturday in the village. Others who worked on the farm include Paddy Neill, Gay Gordon, Joe Millea, Peter Duggan, Mossy Dee and Jim Grace and Eugene Mac Gaharan came after retiring from Bord na Mona. I fondly remember many of the early residents such as Jim and Daisy Sullivan, John and Mrs. O’ Shea, John and Mrs. Gormley, The Murphy family, John and Mrs. Blake and Ma Sullivan who became my weekly companion to the butchers in Prosperous each Friday.
When Father Flood came to the parish he was instrumental in setting up the Credit Union. He invited me to an AGM at which I very reluctantly agreed to become a board member. As I reflect on the 25 years which I served on the board, it was a very rewarding and enjoyable experience as I spent many happy times with Steve and Betty Kinsella, Bridgie Young, Totty Butler, Kathleen Kenna, Iggy and Kathleen Kane and Mrs. Campbell from Rathcoffey. I must not forget Billy Finn who came to do up the tots or check them in pre-computer days.

Maureen Cusack

Maureen Cusack recalls coming to live in Cooleragh in 1957. Our thanks to Maureen

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