News round-up: Valentia Island and around

The late Mary O'Malley (née Gallagher).
The late Mary O'Malley (née Gallagher).
Kerry Group Rás Mumhan. Photo by Stephen Power

Many past pupils of the late '60s of the Ballyhearney National School, Valentia, will have fond memories of a young teacher from near Achill Island in Mayo by the name of Mary Gallagher, who taught there in those years.

Later to assume the married name of O'Malley, she was the niece of the late Paddy Gallagher of Mayo and Valentia, and the daughter of late parents Fianna Fáil TD Denis Gallagher and his wife Hannah.

Sadly, her death occurred in her mid-60s on Sunday March 25. She passed away peacefully at The Mayo University Hospital. She resided at Coslough, Currane, Achill, and by all accounts was a very diligent community activist up there. Sincere sympathy to her husband John; her children Sinead, JD, Damhnait, Ronan, Donnchadh and Diarmuid; sons & daughters-in-law; grandchildren; siblings; and extended family. Thanks for the great childhood memories Mary agus go ndéana Dia trocaire ort

Saying goodbye to a true Valentia islander

On Tuesday April 3, Valentia Islander Patrick O'Driscoll was laid to rest in Kilmore Graveyard.

Patrick would not have been a familiar personality to many of the younger generation of Valentia Islanders as he left Valentia Island many years ago to settle in Dublin. However,as a true Valentia Islander, he was well known among his own peers and those somewhat younger as he had a considerable number of relatives here. He passed away on Good Friday in the Connolly Hospital of Blanchardstown.

Patrick came from the townland of Dohilla, a place of outstanding beauty: sloping fields and rugged seascapes lying in the northern side of Valentia Island, overlooking Valentia Harbour, Beginish Island, the Valentia Lighthouse, Dingle Bay and the Blasket Islands far off in the distance.

He was born to parents Patrick and Alice (née Bowler) O'Driscoll, a family which comprised four boys and three girls. Having completed their secondary school education in Cahersiveen his brothers and sisters left Dohilla to permanently reside in various parts of the country.

Patrick stayed on to operate the family's small farm, caring for his parents. The O'Driscolls were reared in the pre- Valentia Bridge days and would have cycled from Dohilla to cross by motor boat ferry from Knightstown to Renard on their way to secondary school in Cahersiveen.

The commencement of the journey involved quite a steep climb from the lowlands of Dohilla, very often not the most pleasant of journeys in a bicycle with a bag full of books on a day of wind and rain.

After the deaths of his parents, which occurred in close proximity to each other in 1970, Patrick left Valentia Island at the age of 30 to settle on a permanent basis in Dublin.

He rented the grazing of the land to John Francis Curran and in the 1980s the land was bought by Noel Lynch of Chapeltown. The late Kevin Mackey purchased the family house and it is currently owned by Paul Duff, a native of Glasnevin,Dublin.

The farm had passed through six generations of the O'Drisoll family. A good and abiding memory for this scribe is of sitting in the back of his tractor-drawn trailer with a primary school friend of the '60s to enjoy a spin as he travelled home from the creamery to Dohilla via the slopes of the Chapel Road.

His remains arrived from Dublin on Easter Monday night to the church of St Derarca and Teresa of Chapeltown to be met by a very large attendance of relatives, friends and old neighbours of times past. Fr Larry Kelly of Cahersiveen performed the obsequies.

Fr Kelly also officiated at the funeral ceremony on the following day in which readings were performed by Patrick's nephews and nieces.His nephew Shane O'Driscoll read a poem of tribute, and the eulogy was rendered by his brother, Michael.

A rainy day in Kilmore did not dampen the warm homecoming accorded to the remains by the many relatives, friends and neighbours of Patrick. They remembered him as a man of unassuming, friendly and pleasant disposition. A member of one of the last native Valentia Island families to permanently reside in Dohilla, he was laid to rest among his own not far from the seagull's cry and the awesome beauty of the place where he worked his farm in his formative years honed as a Valentia Islander. Sincere condolences are offered to his sisters Mary (Hanafin),Ann and Alice (Brady); brothers John, Maurice and Michael; sisters-in-law; brother-in-law; nieces; nephews; and many relatives and friends in Valentia and elsewhere. Solás na bhFlaitheas dó.

Rain no dampener on Rás Mumhan visit to the island

Easter Sunday was cold and wet in Valentia following the pattern of the wettest March recorded at the Valentia Observatory in 56 years.

The RAS Mumhan cycle race visited Valentia, going through Chapeltown and up the Chapel Road westwards through Feighmane. It is now an annual attraction, particularly through Chapeltown.

The Valentia Island Car Treasure Hunt was won by the team of Richard Quigley, his brother-in-law Seanie Murphy, and his daughters Emma and Ciara Quigley. They scored 25 points out of 30. The three Lyne sisters from Cooil, namely Amy, Chloe and Ciara, in company with Elaine Murphy of Coromore scored very impressively with 23 points to make it an all-female second place. Well done to them and to all who competed on a wet and miserable day.

Deep sadness at recent passing of Dermot Paul

Sincere sympathy is extended to Angela Murphy of Knightstown and Glounthane, County Cork, on the death on March 3 of her husband Dermot Paul. Sympathy also to sons Darragh and Colin and to Dermot's brother Kevin; sister Rosaleen McSweeney; sisters Carmel Conneelly and Kathleen Ryan; nieces nephews; extended family and friends. Go ndéana Dia trocaire uirthi.

Success for Valentia ladies in Ring Lyne darts contest

Well done to Michelle Bradley, Brigid Corcoran and Deirdre Lyne on winning the recent Ring Lyne Ladies Darts by defeating the Anchor Bar team two in the final on a score of 5-4. Thanks to all participants, and Emer Curran on supporting the B league.

Great win in championship clash

On a wet, cold and miserable Easter Sunday in O'Connor Park, Valentia, the Valentia Young Islanders opened their Junior Championship campaign with a facile win over Moyvane on a score of 4-11 to 0-5. In a competition of four groups of four, Valentia are accompanied by Moyvane, Ballyduff and Renard. Each group winner will contest a semi-final.

The half-time score stood at 1-2 to 0-5. The score stood at two points each when the Valentia midfielder Jim Lynch scored a goal. Valentia's other first half scores came from Stephen Sheehan (0-1) and Jim Lynch (0-1). Moyvane's points came from Martin Stack (0-2, one a free), Shane Stack(0-1), Gearóid Mulvihill(0-1) and Gavin Kennelly (0-1). Moyvane failed to score in the second half with Valentia totally dominant.

Midfielder Jim Lynch (2-3) was the man of the match, ably assisted by his midfield partner Brendan O'Sullivan and by a good defence in which John Curran and Paul O'Sullivan were very prominent. Valentia's second-half scorers were Jim Lynch (1-2), Brendan O'Sullivan(1-2), Rory Keating (1-0), Andy Quigley (0-3, 0-2 from frees), Paul O'Sullivan (0-1), and John Shanahan (0-1). Team: Richard Quigley; David Hussey; John Curran; Concubhair Guiney; John Lynch; Paul O'Sullivan; Senan Lynch; Brendan O'Sullivan; Jim Lynch; Ger 'The Plumber' O'Shea; Rory Keating; Andy Quigley; John Shanahan; Stephen Sheehan; Paul O'Connor. Sub introduced: Junior Murphy.

Footnote: Valentia lost their second group game to Ballyduff on Sunday by 1-8 to 2-14