Saturday 10 December 2016

This brainy 94-year-old was just named Grandparent of the Year

Published 24/11/2016 | 20:35

Grand Parent of the Year Moya Connelly (94)
Grand Parent of the Year Moya Connelly (94)
Grand Parent of the Year Moya Connelly (94) pictured with Micheal O”Muircheartaigh .

A Granny who completed her Junior Cert exams at 92 has been named Grandparent of the Year.

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Moya Connelly, now 94, was presented with the prize in recognition of her “lust for life”.

This retired nurse returned to education six years ago for an IT course so that she could email her brother in Brazil and Skype her grandchildren. She later sat Junior Cert exams in history and English in Coláiste Éanna in Cabra.

She continues to take art classes, and made several friends in her courses. She is also a keen artist, continuing to take art classes and making her own Christmas cards.

Grand Parent of the Year Moya Connelly (94) pictured with Her Grand Daughter Hannah Connelly (18) and Micheal O”Muircheartaigh .
Grand Parent of the Year Moya Connelly (94) pictured with Her Grand Daughter Hannah Connelly (18) and Micheal O”Muircheartaigh .

She was nominated by her granddaughter Hannah, one of five grandchildren, for  the entry described Hannah’s grandmother as ‘inspirational’.

Speaking to independent.ie, Moya said: “I just wanted to keep my mind active. My grandchildren have phones and iPads and everything, and I thought I should try to keep up with them.”

When asked what she was planning next, Moya said “Not another exam! I have the art classes, and I write poetry as well.”

“I’d really like to say thanks to everyone at Cabra Community College. If it weren’t for them I never would have done the exams.”

Moya won a trophy, a weekend away in Ireland and a Specsavers voucher for her efforts.

“I’ve got to get some posh glasses!” she laughed.

Grand Parent of the Year Moya Connelly (94) pictured with Her Grand Daughter Hannah Connelly (18) and Micheal O”Muircheartaigh .
Grand Parent of the Year Moya Connelly (94) pictured with Her Grand Daughter Hannah Connelly (18) and Micheal O”Muircheartaigh .

The Grandparent of the Year award was launched by Specsavers in association with Third Age. There were four regional winners from Connacht, Ulster, Munster and Leinster who competed for the national title.

The other finalists were Oliver Ryan from Moycullen, Galway (Connacht), Margaret McConnell from Letterkenny (Ulster) and Betty Crosbie from Killarney (Munster).

In a statement, Chairperson of Specsavers Ireland Sinead Clohessy said, “We received heartwarming entries from all across the country and were truly inspired by Moya’s story. Despite her hearing loss she is still living life to the full and is proof that it is never too late to learn and accomplish your goals.”

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