Friday 23 August 2019

'Mom was modelling and Dad was playing for Ireland, it was an exciting time' - Michelle Rocca's daughter on the photo she'd hate to lose

Natasha Rocca with her parents Michelle and John, and her sister Danielle.
Natasha Rocca with her parents Michelle and John, and her sister Danielle.
Geraldine Gittens

Geraldine Gittens

Natasha Rocca's parents were Ireland's Posh and Becks of the 1980s.

Her mother is former Miss Ireland Michelle Rocca, who presented the Eurovision in 1988, and her father is former Ireland and Arsenal footballer John Devine.

Growing up, their daughter Natasha remembers a jet-setting childhood with lots of travel.

Natasha followed Michelle's footsteps when she began a promising modelling career, but was injured in a horror accident in 2004 in San Francisco.

The then 19-year-old model was left with a subarachnoid brain haemhorrage, jaw injuries and memory loss.

However she battled back and defied the odds, and has written a book about her recovery. Now, she is launching her own interior design business.

Here, she tells Independent.ie why this photo is the one she’d hate to lose: a photo of her as a young child with her parents and her older sister Danielle.

“It captures a really happy memory for our family.”

“Visually, I love the 80’s style and the cute dresses. As kids, Danielle and I were always matching.”

“Danielle and I were the first two grandkids on the Rocca side, so the photo was taken by my grandfather Patrick at my grandparents’ home where we spent a lot of time growing up.”

“At this time dad was playing for Ireland and Arsenal Football Clubs and mom was modelling and raising us between England and Dublin. So, it was a busy and exciting time with lots of travel and moving around.”

“Since that day and ever since, my parents have been not only incredible parents yet, best friends to me.”

“They taught me that I need to work hard achieve my goals, to stick to my values, to respect myself and everyone and to have a sense of humour. Most importantly, that family always comes first and that the home is the centre of everything.”

“My sister Danielle has always been an inspiration to me; beautiful, intelligent and strong and always welcomes me in her home. I am very lucky to have her as an older sister. Along with my two other sisters, brother, niece and extended family and best friends. All of whom I cherish.”

“No matter what happens in life, I feel fortunate for my family, my dog and our family pets. We spend as much time as possible together and they make each day better. They are my world.”

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