Entertainment Festivals

Saturday 17 November 2018

Luxumbourg Rose Amber Crean is a distant relative of Antarctic explorer Tom Crean

EXPLORING THE FAMILY TREE: Amber Crean, who was selected as the 2018 Luxembourg Rose. Photo: Fergal Phillips
EXPLORING THE FAMILY TREE: Amber Crean, who was selected as the 2018 Luxembourg Rose. Photo: Fergal Phillips
Niamh Horan

Niamh Horan

She has spent her young life travelling the world and is most at home when on water - just some of the ways Luxembourg Rose Amber Crean feels she carries the spirit of Tom Crean.

The 26-year-old is a distant relative of the Antarctic explorer and often heard tales of his valorous life when she was growing up.

Speaking to the Sunday Independent this weekend, Amber said: "I loved hearing stories about him from my grandfather and I was very proud when I heard he was a distant relative. My grandfather also taught me how to sail, how to tie knots and I definitely feel at my happiest when I am on water - I'm a rescue scuba diver - so there are small traits in my family which I feel were handed down over the years."

She added: "I try to travel as much and as far as I can. That's a maxim I live by so that's something else.

"But I think, in general, Irish people have the tendency to wander and explore, I've come across it a lot on my own travels.

"When I was in South America, I discovered that an Irish man - Admiral William Brown - was the founder of the Argentine navy. There are even streets named after him; so wherever you go, you see Irish people not only travelling but making an impact."

Amber is related to intrepid explorer Tom Crean
Amber is related to intrepid explorer Tom Crean

Now working as a financial auditor at Ernst & Young, Amber believes the Rose of Tralee is still relevant in the age of modern-day feminism.

"The world today is changing, particularly for women, and in this day and age I think it is becoming increasingly difficult for young people, especially women, to feel comfortable and confident in their own skin as we are constantly bombarded with false advertising and mixed messages about how we should look and feel.

"The Rose of Tralee is truly a celebration of young women who are actively engaged in their communities and I think for that example to go out to other young women can only be a good thing."

The festival begins tomorrow and will finish with a live televised final on August 21.

Amber is seen on her travels
Amber is seen on her travels

In the meantime, Amber revealed some of the madness behind the scenes as all 57 roses have joined one WhatsApp group.

"It's very funny, there are girls on it in time zones all over the world so you could wake up to hundreds of messages. It's hard to keep up with it but you can dip in and out and there's so much support and goodwill among everyone. I feel like we are all making friends even before we meet."

Read more: 'I think it would be a disaster if a woman started presenting the Rose of Tralee' - Maura Derrane

'I get asked all the time if I'm really Irish' - Waterford Rose Kirsten Mate Maher

Amber diving with her Rose sash
Amber diving with her Rose sash

'Times are changing' says 'mother rose' Shauna Ray Lacey ahead of Rose of Tralee 2018 

Sunday Independent

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