Sunday 19 January 2020

Ann McArdle was a leading light in choir for 60 years

Ann McArdle nee McLoughlin, born 1st April 1946, passed away peacefully on the 13th December 2019 in Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital Drogheda surrounded by her loving family.

Ann was born to the late Patsy and Betty Mc Loughlin of the North Strand, Drogheda. Predeceased by her sister Veronica, she is survived by her husband Paddy, daughters Lucy and Emily, sons in law Paddy and Padraig, her sister Carmel and brother in law Bernard and grandchildren Andrew, Abigail, Nathan, Alex and Phoebe.

Ann married Paddy at the age of 22, together they planned and built their home in Beaulieu, they went on to have two girls, Lucy and Emily. When the girls were small, Ann worked towards her diploma in music, she achieved this and went on to teach children piano from her home.

During this time, Ann continued to play the organ and lead the choir in the Franciscan church as she had done, from the age of 14. After nearly 40 years of being organist, the Franciscan church closed, Ann and the choir relocated to Termonfechin where they remained for the last 20 years. Ann had a great appreciation and understanding of the liturgy, she used this knowledge to inform planning of weekly musical programmes that were delivered in both churches. They also continued St Anthony's novena in St. Peters.

Ann had a great love and respect of the river Boyne, the tide and everything relating to nature. She would take daily walks on the" Big Strand" in Clogherhead. When her grandchildren came along, she loved to take them to the beach in all weathers to grow their appreciation for their natural environment. Ann loved to drive to the pier where she would enjoy the sunset.

Over the last few weeks, the messages, conversation and the sheer volume of people visiting her home is a true reflection of the woman that Ann was, she made a huge impact on anyone that she became close to, she offered support and council to those that would look to her for help. To her family, she has left a void that no one could fill. As a family they are forever grateful and blessed to have her as a wife, mother, sister and friend.

The family wish to acknowledge the many expressions of sympathy and gestures of kindness shown to them following her passing.

They wish to offer heartfelt thanks to family, friends and neighbours who went over and above in so many ways. Thank you to everyone who visited their home, attended the wake, service and burial, who also gave much emotional and practical support at a very difficult time.

A special word of thanks to the medical teams and nursing staff of the Mater hospital Dublin and Our Lady of Lourdes hospital Drogheda for the care, compassion and respectful manner in which was afforded to Ann.

To all those who participated in the mass, Fr. Paul, PP Termonfechin, Fr. Aidan Murphy, Fr. Oscar OFM Cork, Fr. Florian OFM Multyfarnham, Canon Sweeney St. Peters Parish, Drogheda. Also, in attendance at the mass, Fr. Sean Quinn and Fr. Clayton Lee, apologies from Canon Carroll St. Peters Parish and Fr. Pascal Mc Donnell OFM, Rossnowlagh who had prior commitments. To all the family members who did readings, prayers, gifts and personal tributes.

To Ann's wonderful choir whom she was director and organist for the last 60 years, the lifelong friends she made, and cherished due to the commitment and dedication that was shown to her by the members old and new. The funeral mass was a very special and fitting tribute, they sang with such composure through what was an extremely emotional and difficult time. The music offered comfort and support to the family and reinforced the love and respect in which they know she was held. Thank you to Kevin Donnelly who kindly accompanied the choir at the funeral mass.

Finally, Oliver Curtis & Son Funeral Directors, especially Thomas who handled the arrangements in such a professional and sensitive manner.

For those who helped in any way, your contribution made the loss more bearable and the Holy Sacrifice of the mass will be offered for all your intentions.

The Month's Mind mass will be offered on Saturday evening, 11th January at 7pm in the church of the Immaculate Conception, Termonfechin.

May she rest in peace.

Drogheda Independent