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Obituaries 22nd March 2014

Story by John Donohoe

Wednesday, 26th March, 2014 4:29pm

Obituaries 22nd March 2014

The late Liam Carey.

Liam F Carey, Dunshaughlin

There was widespread sadness amongst his family, former students, teaching colleagues and the general Dunshaughlin area following the passing on 26th February last of Liam F Carey, Dun Mhuire, Lagore Road, who was a former vice principal of Dunshaughlin Community College.

Aged 91, he died at Kilbrew Recuperation and Nursing Care Home, Curraha, where he had been resident for three months prior to his passing.

Apart from his teaching activities, Liam was very involved in community and parish work, remaining active in village life after his retirement from the local secondary school in 1987.

Liam Finbarr Carey was born in January 1923 at Magazine Road, in Cork city, where he received his early education with the Christian Brothers and the North Monastery Technical School. His father, William, was a joinery foreman, and his mother, Catherine, a native of Kanturk. Young Liam followed his father into the carpentry and joinery business, serving an apprenticeship from 1938 with Murray and Lane Builders in Cork city, while at the same time, attending night school at the Shearman Crawford Technical Institute.

He spent many years working as a joiner before beginning teacher training at Bolton Street Technical College in Dublin in September 1945, and getting conferred with a teaching diploma in 1947, in woodwork and technical drawing.

On first February 1948, he began his teaching career with Meath Vocational Education Committee, teaching adult woodwork night classes in the courthouse. In March 1948, along with Seamus Ó Siocháin, he organised classes at Gormanston Army Camp. The last Battalion of the Construction Corp was one of their classes. Seamus taught English and maths and Liam taught basic woodwork and mechanical drawing, and also has a woodwork night class for officers.

He taught for a period in Rathangan and Longwood, and in 1951, came to Dunshaughlin, where a new VEC school was opening. While it was being constructed on the site of the present Meath County Council offices, the school operated from Dunshaughlin Workhouse, and one of his first tasks was to move furniture to the new school from the workhouse.

The school opened with 23 boys and 14 girls attending. Liam Carey became vice principal in 1969, and the principal since 1958 was John Holland.

Recalling his time in the school for local history book ‘Dunshaughlin Through the Years ‘ in 1996, Liam remembered: "The numbers were small at first, and then under Education Minister Donagh O’Malley’s Free Education Act in 1969, introducing free transport, the place burst at the seams. We were struggling for years with rooms – classes were held in corridors and in cloakrooms, and children were coming from as far away as Garristown, Summerhill, Mulhussey and Moynalvey. Before that, when the children came on bicycles, we had to build a bicycle shed to accommodate all the bicycles."

By 1973, there were 222 on the roll book, and 80 attending adult education classes. In 1976, the new community college was built on its present site, bringing in a new era for education in Dunshaughlin. School attendance numbers continued to rise – Liam recalled the new school was built to accommodate 500, and they already had 600 by the time it opened.

As a teacher, Liam was recognised as a mentor to students in their chosen careers and as a father figure to young teachers.

When he retired in September 1987, he was described by John Holland as a very popular, courteous man who would be sadly missed by staff and students alike. Liam Carey also spent many years giving night classes in Longwood and Bective.

Those early teaching posts in Meath were not his first excursion into Meath. He recalled during atrocious weather conditions in 1946, civil servants, office workers and students in Dublin were asked to ‘go down the country’ to help with the saving of the harvest.

Liam and 14 of his classmates in Bolton Street gathered at Parnell Square, and were put onto a fish lorry from Hanlon’s of Moore Street, arriving outside the barracks in Dunshaughlin at half ten or eleven o’clock in the morning. They were picked up by a man in another truck, and brought out country roads to work on farms, making sheaves of straw behind a mowing machine. Liam had experience of this from working on his uncle’s farm in Kanturk. In later years, he traced the farms back to be Leonards of Mooretown, Drumree, and Culmullen, and the driver was the late Mattie Russell.

Also during those Bolton Street years, in summer of 1946, Liam took part in an Irish language course in Ceathrú, Co na Gaillimh, and here he met Betty Keena from North Circular Road in Dublin. They were to marry in 1954, and had twin sons, Fergus and Paul. Liam was to be a fluent Irish speaker for the rest of his life.

Deceased was an instructor with Meath Civil Defence for 20 years, and in 1971 was a founder member of Dunshaughlin Pitch and Putt Club, becoming a trustee. He was also a founding director in 1985 and trustee of Dunshaughlin and District Credit Union.

He was a lifelong member of the Pioneer Total Abstinence Association (PTAA), and had great devotion to the church. Liam was responsible for plotting and recording Dunshaughlin cemetery records, and counted the church offerings every week. In December 2006, he was awarded the Papal Benemerenti Medal for his service to the church.

A dedicated family man, he was interested in travel, music, stamp collecting, hurling, pitch and putt and "all things Cork."

The family was struck by tragedy in 1988 when Betty Carey died in an road traffic accident while cycling on the Drumree Road in Dunshaughlin.

Liam is survived by his sons, Fergus and Paul; daughters-in-law, Mary and Suzanne; grandchildren Eoin, Soracha, Oisín, Fiona, Cormac and Nika, relatives and friends.

The funeral took place from the Church of Ss Patrick and Seachnaill, Dunshaughlin, to the local cemetery, with the members of the PTAA providing guards of honour for the removal and funeral, and family members taking part in the ceremony celebrated by Fr Joe Clavin, PP, Dunshaughlin, and Fr John Kerrane, Culmullen. Fr Brendan Ferris, PP, Curraha, attended at the removal.

In a tribute following his death, the current principal of Dunshaughlin Community College, Shane Foley, wrote: On behalf of the staff, students and parents of Dunshaughlin Community College, I would like to express our sympathies to the family of Liam on his sad passing. Liam was a former deputy principal of the college and was one of the key people who have made our school what it is today. We thank you Liam for your dedication and vision for our school."

Students of the college also provided a guard of honour at the funeral. A month’s memory Mass takes place on Friday 4th April at 7.30pm in Dunshaughlin.

Paddy Carpenter, Newtown

Patrick (Paddy-Hanna) Carpenter, who has died aged 94, was part of the Syddan team that brought the first ever Meath senior football championship title to the parish in 1949.

Paddy, of Creevagh, Newtown, Ardee, died on 9th February last in Our Ladies Hospital, Navan. A native of Newtown, he married Peggy Carry on 10th June 1942.

He was the last surviving member of the 1940 Syddan team. Deceased worked for Meath County Council for many years. He loved his garden and flowers, especially his window boxes, which were admired by many.

Predeceased in October 1999 by his wife, Peggy, and in September 2006 by his daughter, Ann, Paddy is survived by his daughter, Geraldine Carpenter, Creevagh; son, Tom Carpenter, Newtown; daughter-in-law, Eilish, grandchildren and great grandchildren. The funeral Mass took place from the Church of the Holy Cross, Lobinstown, to the adjoining cemetery.

Essie Burke, Athboy

Great sadness and shock was caused by the sudden death on the 16th February last of Mary Esther (Essie) Burke (née Dolan), Cloneymore, Athboy at Our Lady’s Hospital, Navan.

Aged 76, she passed away peacefully surrounded by her family. A native of Bawnboy, Co Cavan, she emigrated to New York in 1957, and there met her late husband, Sonny, whom she married in 1959. After 13 years they left New York to start a new life in Cloneymore, Athboy. Essie was very active with Athboy ICA. Many will remember her as a devoted wife, loving mother and caring grandmother. She always had a smile, time for a chat and cup of tea. Essie enjoyed gardening and going to the local bingo.

For the past year, Essie was extremely well cared for at St Elizabeth’s Nursing Home, Athboy.

She is survived by her daughters, Carol Ann, Pauline, Kathleen, and Nuala; sons, Noel and Liam, sons-in-law, daughters-in-law, grandchildren, sisters, brother, sisters-in-law, brother-in-law, nieces, nephews, extended family and friends.

The funeral Mass took place in St Lawrence’s Church, Rathmore, followed by burial in adjoining cemetery. A month’s memory Mass takes place Sunday 13th April, at 9am in St Lawrence’s Church, Rathmore.

Theresa Powderly, Navan

The regretted death occurred on 16th February last of Theresa Powderly, Clusker Park, Navan, aged 58, at Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital, Drogheda.

Deceased was a native of St Patrick’s Terrace, Navan, and was daughter of Mary and the late Tony Boland. She worked for Navan Carpets for nine years, and married Pat Powderly in 1977.

Theresa loved playing bingo in Simonstown, and at the Young Men’s Hall, and also enjoyed gardening and anything to do with flowers. She took part in the Ladies Mini Marathon in Dublin for different charities over the last few years.

She is survived by her husband, Pat; daughter, Sabrina Fitzpatrick; sons, Barry and Stephen; mother, Mary Boland; brothers, Tommy, Patrick, Ollie, Martin, Jimmy, Paul, Peter, Anthony, Michael; sisters, Rosemary Smith, Pauline Martin, Patricia Conway and Nancy Farrell, and 10 grandchildren.

The funeral took place from St Mary’s Church, to St Finian’s Cemetery.