By Martin Walsh
FACHTNA O’Donovan was presented with the Courtmacsherry Harbour Festival Recognition Award at a recent ceremony held in his honour.
At the Courtmacsherry community hall, Vincent O’Donovan said Fachtna continues to perform acts of kindness to individuals and groups alike.
‘Born in 1943, with a great O’Donovan Astna connection, on lands that straddle the Timoleague and Barryroe parish at Ahawadda, Fachtna was an innovative and technical genius at a very early age,’ Vincent said. ‘After leaving National School at the age of 13, he progressed to the C&M Garage in Clonakilty and there, for the next six years, learnt his apprenticeship as a fully qualified mechanic. Back then, a mechanic meant an all-round person that covered electrical, mechanical and all types technical.’
In 1963, a certain man in the village of Courtmacsherry called Jim Burke decided he wanted to open a modern garage, a car dealership and a petrol station in the large building directly below the Pier House Bar. ‘Jim poached young Fachtna to come back to the village and together with fellow workers like Richard O’Mahony, Sean O’Brien and Barry Flynn, the dream of the village enterprise was born.’
Fachtna’s involvement with the Courtmacsherry Regatta Committee was also recalled. Later, Fachtna went on to work in Foley’s Garage and in 1974 joined the garage department of Barryroe Co-Op.
It was stated that during his long and dedicated service at Barryroe Co Op, Fachtna would have helped nearly every household in the parish, as his helpful style made sure that nobody was ever left stranded.