Friends remember Anto while raising cash for Pieta House
The more than 150 people who packed into Grainger's pub in Swords Manor recently had a double purpose in mind as they remembered a friend who passed too soon and raised money along the way for Pieta House.
It was a celebration of the life of Anto Boylan, a local man from St Cronan's who passed a few short months ago.
His friends and neighbours quickly got together to organise an event in his memory and raise money for Pieta House along the way.
Experienced charity fundraiser, Ailish Monaghan stepped into help and began to put the event together.
Graingers offered their venue and sponsored the food on the night with chefs and bar staff staying on late and going above and beyond the call of duty to make the night a great success.
Anto worked in the kitchens of St Ita's hospital and there were plenty of his colleagues in attendance on the night as well as neighbours and friends from around Swords.
The night raised more than €1,600 and the money is still coming in, according to Ailish.
Two signed Dubs jerseys were auctioned on the night, with one donated by three local friends of Anto's and another by Darren Daly and his Dubs teammates.
Ailish said it was a 'brilliant night' and she thanked MC and musician for the night, Charlie Daly for keeping the event going.
A raffle was also held on the night and Ailish is hugely grateful to all the local businesses and individuals who donated some great prizes on the night.
She said there were also very generous cash donations made by the residents of St Cronan's and St Colmcille's GAA club as well as local representatives, Deputy Clare Daly TD and Deputy Brenday Ryan TD.
Ailish also singled out Robert Knight for thanks who made a generous €100 voucher donation fo rthe Old Schoolhouse in Swords.
The big attendance and the generous donations went to show the affection in which Anto was held in this community and the Swords man was never far from anyone's thoughts as the night progressed.
Ailish is hugely grateful to everyone who supported the event in any way and said that local people had been 'very good' to her and everyone who helped put the event together.
Ailish is now hoping that this will become an annual event in Anto's memory and no doubt, Pieta House will be very grateful for the effort that was put in, in raising as much money as possible for this most worthy of charities.
Ailish expl.ained her hopes for future events in Anto's name, saying: 'I think every year we will do something in rememberan ce of him.'
What could have been a sombre occasion was instead, a heartfelt celebration of Anto's life and the impact he made on his friends, and on his community.
It was a beautiful gesture on behalf of all who loved him and the money raised will go towards a very important cause.
You can call Pieta House at 1800 247 247.