By BRIAN MOORE
TWO of Ireland’s oldest surviving women – both from West Cork – passed away last week.
Mourners came from near and far to bid farewell to centenarian Catherine O’Sullivan (nee Kelly) who passed away at her daughter’s home in Adrigole.
Catherine, who celebrated her 100th birthday on September 29th this year, will be sadly missed by her family who gathered to fondly recall their mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. Catherine was widowed when her husband Cornelius died in 1964, leaving Catherine to raise their daughters Mary, Sheila, Eileen and Teresa, and their sons Willie and Christy.
‘Nana was born in a time when ships were made of wood and men were made of steel, and so was she,’ Catherine’s granddaughter, Edel Lafferty told The Southern Star. ‘Our grandmother had many great attributes, she was kind, funny, intelligent and most of all resilient. She was the matriarch of the family and the link that brought us all together. She also instilled in us all her incredible work ethic and her fate and devotion to our Lady was a great comfort to her. We will be inspired everyday by her memory and will miss her dearly.’
Also this week, 104 year-old, Durrus native, Sheila Murphy (nee Kelly) passed away peacefully in Cork city. ‘All of us at the Carrigboy National School were saddened to hear of the passing of our oldest living past pupil,’ said principal Michael Cronin.
‘Our school celebrated our 100th anniversary last year and we know that Sheila would have loved to have been able to attend the celebrations. Sheila’s brother Jeremiah, is now the school’s oldest surviving pupil, having reached the age of 100 on the day his sister died. The school expresses its condolences to the Murphy and Kelly families,’ he said.