independent

Tuesday 23 September 2014

Emigrant Trail officially launched on quay front

Published 12/07/2014 | 12:00

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Minister Paul Kehoe Launches the ‘The Emigrant Trail’. Pictured at the Dunbrody Famine Ship, New Ross, are Eamonn Hore (Wexford Co. Council), Larry O’Brien (Cathaoirleach New Ross Municipal District), Minister Paul Kehoe (T.D.), Tara Kerry (Failte Ireland), Willie Keilthy (vice-chair JFK Trust), Sean Connick (CEO of the JFK Trust) and Mick McCormack (New Ross Municipal District).

THE EMIGRANT Trail, which enables people to retrace President John F Kennedy's historic trip to the area in 1963, was officially launched on New Ross quay front on Thursday night.

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Minister Paul Kehoe T.D. performed the official launch at the Dunbrody Famine Ship and visitor centre where a plaque featuring an inscription about last year's JFK50 commemoration events was unveiled.

The 15-mile trail features three key heritage sites in the vicinity of New Ross as well as the historic quayside from where President Kennedy's great grandfather Patrick left for America in 1848. The quayside now features the iconic Emigrant Flame lit from the Eternal Flame at President Kennedy's graveside in Arlington National Cemetery. Officially launching the trail Minister Kehoe said: 'A little over 12 months ago Wexford witnessed the highlight of the 2013 Gathering – JFK 50. The Emigrant Trail is a legacy of that event. I was honoured to represent the State at the graveside of President John F. Kennedy where in the presence of members of the Kennedy Family, including Congressman Joseph Kennedy III, a torch was lit from the Eternal Flame.'

Minister Kehoe said in a symbolic way, the flame completed the journey back to Ireland that President Kennedy promised on his departure in 1963. It was used by President Kennedy's daughter Caroline, his sister Jean and our Taoiseach, Enda Kenny, to light the Emigrant Flame on the quayside in New Ross. 'The Emigrant Flame honours all the emigrants who left our nation,' he said. The Emigrant Trail was developed by Wexford Local Authorities and New Ross Municipal District in conjunction with Failte Ireland and the JFK Trust.

Tara Kerry of Failte Ireland said: 'This new tourism product is unique to Wexford and a great tourism experience. New Ross, in particular, has very exceptional Irish American connections. This resonated globally in June 2013 through the JFK50 Gathering and it's wonderful to see so many coach stops and visitors taking pictures at the New Ross attractions.'

The trail features a life-size statue of President Kennedy, The Dunbrody Famine Ship, the podium marking the spot from where President Kennedy spoke to the people of New Ross in 1963.

New Ross Standard

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