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Grangels’ love burns bright after 55 years

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Jimmy and Frances Grangel celebrating their anniversary with family at home in Ballyrue

Jimmy and Frances Grangel celebrating their anniversary with family at home in Ballyrue

3/5/2020
Frances and Jimmy Grangel celebrated their 55th wedding anniversary at home in the Bawnmore, New Ross. Photo; Mary Browne

3/5/2020 Frances and Jimmy Grangel celebrated their 55th wedding anniversary at home in the Bawnmore, New Ross. Photo; Mary Browne

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Jimmy and Frances Grangel celebrating their anniversary with family at home in Ballyrue

Chopping kindling in Frances O'Brien's back yard in the Irishtown in the 1950s, a young Jimmy Grangel made his first impression on her when he accidentally cut her finger while striking wood, as she cleaned the chopping block.

Despite this, the Longstoners sparked and a relationship was started in their teen years which led to them getting married on May 3, 1965, some 55 years ago and counting.

As neighbours, they grew up together, Jimmy being two years older.

Having trained to be a mechanic, Jimmy worked at Albatros, while Frances worked all her life be it at Ronan's farm picking mushrooms and in Goggins Hardware or at home.

They lived with Frances's mother Maureen O'Sullivan in Irishtown, before moving to The Maudlins and later Ballyrue, where Jimmy built the family home. They had five children: Eileen, Jamie, Paul, Jennifer and Mariclair.

Jamie said they are still as much in love as they were on their wedding day.

'They would have the same relationship that most people have: it's love tempered with patience and understanding. They are both cocooning now so they miss seeing their grandchildren.'

Jimmy (75) and Frances (73) lead active lives and enjoy travel so cocooning hasn't been easy. They regularly visit Killarney and go to England every year to visit relations and tour about.

Both are members of the local active retired group; they enjoy participating in activities at New Ross Youth Centre and trips away with the group.

Jimmy enjoys building sheds in the garden and growing vegetables.

They got a massive surprise when they opened the curtains on May 3, as the family had organised balloons reading Happy Anniversary for their garden, marking their 55 years of married life.

Family members called around later in the day for cake and to spend time with them, including some of their grandchildren.

As Jamie said: 'They loved it! They are a hard working, industrious couple and a great match. They are both very proud of their families and of their home.'

New Ross Standard