AN 88-year-old man from Skibbereen, Harry Watkin, was the oldest person to receive citizenship at a special ceremony in Killarney last week.
Harry is originally from Shropshire in England, but he has lived in Skibbereen for the last 17 years. He attended the event with his wife of almost 64 years, Veronica.The couple, who met and fell in love in Italy in 1954, lived in Dublin before relocating to Skibbereen in 2003 to be with their daughter, Judith Foley.
Harry confirmed that it was only last year that he decided to become an Irish citizen, despite undergoing operations and treatments for cancer.
His son, Greg, confirmed that he is still undergoing treatment and continues to be ‘the most positive individual you would ever meet.’
Harry was one of the 5,000 people to receive his certificate of naturalisation at the ceremony, and can now claim citizenship alongside his Dublin-born wife.
When he arrived back to Skibbereen and popped out for groceries, Harry was amazed by the reaction he got from friends and neighbours.
Greg said: ‘He was moved by how many people came up to him to congratulate him and wish him well.’