KILKENNY based bar manager, Colm Larkin has a special relationship with Barack Obama. The Moneygall native was working in a pub named after Callan man, James Hoban, who designed the White House, in Washington DC when Mr Obama was elected president and he saw him in person, immediately after his stunning victory in the US capital. However, it was on the US president’s visit to Moneygall on Monday that Colm, who runs Bridie’s pub on John Street, part of the Langton Group, got to shake his hero’s hand.
“It was surreal. I went home to Moneygall on Saturday and the village was just electric, and it has been in party mode ever since. It’s the best thing to have happened there,” he said.
The man who is best friends, with (Henry the 8th) Henry Healy, Mr Obama’s distant cousin said it was a fantastic occasion and one which the people will cherish for the rest of their lives.
“When he started walking down the street and shaking hands with everyone, it just lifted all of us,” Colm said,. He shook the president’s hand and swears that he has not washed it since.
He had no problem with tickets for the event. His mother Ann collected his on Thursday in plenty of time for the big arrival.
And Colm worked in Ollie Hayes’s pub where Mr Obama had a pint. “What the cameras didn’t show was the huge marquee erected out the back of the pub. And he disclosed that the 50 euro note tendered by Mr Obama for the drink he and his wife Michelle consumed will be framed.