ON JANUARY 19 last, we bade farewell to Katie Sinnott nee Carberry who died on Wednesday, January 16, in her 99th year.
Katie was born on July 24, 1914, just four days before the outbreak of World War I. Katie spent her whole life in the Kilmuckridge area having been born in Littermore.
She spent her early years with an aunt in Killincooley and Tinacree where she was to settle following her marriage at the age of 19 in 1933 to Mike Sinnott from Newtown, Ballygarrett, before moving to her home in Morriscastle in 1940. Mike predeceased her in 1991.
In Morriscastle, she reared 11 children, all of whom are alive and well today in Ireland, the UK, and the USA. She was also grandmother to 17 grandchildren and 13 great grandchildren.
But as a reflection of the respect and love shown to her, she was called ' Granny' by many others.
Katie loved to travel and often spoke of one of her first journeys which was to the Eucharistic Congress in Dublin in 1932. Subsequently she had visited most parts of Ireland and also travelled to the USA to her daughter Madge's wedding, to the UK and on several occasions to Lourdes.
In fact if you said you were going to somewhere in Ireland the likely response you would get is 'I was there' and not only that but she would know all about the area and what is important to visit -
this in the days before the internet was available to inform us.
In the 1960s and 70s, Katie had a small shop which used to serve teas, coffees, sweets and ice cream and it became a meeting place for the visitors that came to Morriscastle initially from England and later from mainly Dublin.
She enjoyed meeting the people who came to the shop nearly as much as they enjoyed her home baked bread, cakes and tarts.
Boys camps, initially from Enniscorthy, led by the late Fr Scallan camped in Hammell's field, and later from Maynooth and Bunclody in Sinnott's field. They came to Morriscastle for many years for two weeks in the summer and Katie made a lasting impact on many of the lads that attended these camps many of whom remained in contact with her through the years.
Katie was very much a part of the local community in Kilmuckridge and up until recently attended coffee mornings and many other charity events in the village and beyond.
She was particularly proud of her son Eddie's achievement in his collections for the RNLI over the years and helped in any way she could to make these events a success.
This was reflected in the guard of honour provided by the RNLI at her funeral.
Katie was one of the oldest members of the St Mary's 79 Club and attended the weekly meetings up until recently and always enjoyed the club trips and Christmas parties.
She was also a regular visitor to the Ballygarrett 1914 Club. She was very often one of the last to leave a party and thoroughly enjoyed a night out.
Katie was the last surviving member of the 1925 year of Kilmuckridge National School and had somewhat of a celebrity status in the village and surrounding area because of her age and her ability to remember past events.
She also enjoyed performing the switching on of the village Christmas lights.
Central to Katie's life was her faith and love of her family and nature.
She always looked forward to visits from her family and friends and the house was very rarely empty. Nobody ever left without a cup of tea. She had a deep faith and religious belief and prayed the rosary every night.
Katie loved animals, especially her dogs who she always ensured were well cared for. She hated to see any animal being cruelly treated and strays were never turned away.
Katie lived through some turbulent and difficult times, two world wars, the troubled times in Ireland, the early foundations of the Irish state and through all of this and much more she remained positive and steadfast in her faith.
Her funeral Mass on January 19 was celebrated by her son Fr. John and was a sad occasion for her family, friends and the parish of Kilmuckridge but it was also a celebration of a long and happy life which touched so many people.
The huge numbers that attended her wake and funeral was a true testament to their love and respect for a gentle unassuming lady.
Katie is deeply mourned by her family: Willie, Kathleen, Miley, Eddie, Eilish ( Morriscastle), Fr. John ( Ballindaggin), Mai ( Roscrea), Peter [(Gorey), Madge (South Dakota), Kevin (Florida), Michael ( Cheshire), sons in law and daughters in law, grandchildren, great grandchildren, cousins, sister in law, nephews, nieces, relatives and friends.
May Katie rest in peace and may her memory and the standards she set for us all continue to live in our hearts.