The death occurred on Sunday, September 16 in St Luke’s Hospital, Kilkenny, following a short illness, of Ann Phelan, The Quay, Thomastown. Ann was the eldest daughter of the late Tommy and Maggie Begley, Newtown Terrace (Maggie was a member of the Hackett family, Inistioge). Tommy died in1958 at the age of 42 and Maggie died in 1981.
Ann was a very caring and generous person who lived for her family and was always there for them. She will be sadly missed and will be remembered fondly by her extended family and friends. Ann’s home was always open and over the years many people called to see her and were always sure of a welcome. Never one for socialising, Ann was happy in her own place among her own things. She had a great collection of ornaments collected down through the years and could recall the origin of each one. She carried out all the painting and decorating of her home, a task which gave her great enjoyment.
Her death brings to mind many memories of times past, Ann’s father worked in St Columba’s in the fifties and one evening each week he would show a film for the inmates. Ann and her siblings were allowed to attend these shows. Being the cousin across the road, I was always brought along. In those times a free show was a great treat. Christmas Day and St Stephen’s Day were very special as all the cousins would congregate in the little room at 9, Newtown Terrace for a game of Snakes and Ladders or Ludo and being Christmas, there was always lemonade and biscuits.
Prior to her marriage to Jim, Ann worked for some years in St Columba’s Hospital and many of her former workmates attended her funeral. Jim was involved in the garage and hackney business and during the sixties he would be hired to bring loads to dances and naturally Ann was the front seat passenger on these occasions. Ann and Jim would have celebrated their 44th Wedding Anniversary on Friday last.
Her unexpected death has left her family with a deep sense of loss but with many treasured memories
Ann was attended by the chaplain in St.Luke’s Hospital and was then brought home to be waked. Over the two days there was a steady stream of neighbours and friends who came to pay their last respects. Rev Dan Bollard, PP and Rev Dermot Ryan attended for rosary and prayers in the house. On Tuesday the remains were received in The Church of the Assumption by Rev Dermot Ryan where Requiem Mass was celebrated. The lessons were read by Richard Phelan(godson) and Joan Cleere(cousin) The psalm was beautifully sung by Pauline Begley, accompanied by Olivia Dunne. Prayers of the Faithful were recited by Tommy(brother), Ciara(granddaughter),Kia(grandniece), Mag(niece), Conor(Grandson), Vicki(granddaughter).
The offertory gifts reflected Ann’s many interests in life and her sister-in-law, Maureen gave a narrative of items presented.
Handmade teddies, Picture of Elvis, Flowers, Paint Brush and ornaments were carried to the altar by her grandchildren, Dylan, Ceabhlom, Tara, Ciara, James, Gavin and Kyle. Ann’s brother Frank and her sister Rita brought the water and wine. Throughout the service, hymns were sung by Pauline Begley accompanied by Olivia Dunne.
In his homily, Rev Dermot Ryan spoke of Ann’s many fine qualities and her dedication to her family. She was a great neighbour. Her home was always open and she was always there. He welcomed her family, friends and neighbours to the church where she was baptised, received her First Communion and Confirmation and worshipped all her life. He extended sympathy on behalf of the parish to all the family.
In her reflection, Annmarie gave the congregation an insight into her mother’s life, her love of her family and her constant support at all times. She was a devoted wife, mother and grandmother and she will be sadly missed by her husband, Jim, son, Anthony, daughters, Kathleen, Mags
Annmarie and Ber, sons-in-law, Pat, Noel and Trevor, 13 grandchildren, sister, Rita brothers,Tommy, Bart and Frank, sisters-in-law, brother-in-law and all her extended family.
The remains were carried from the church by her son, Anthony, grandson, Kevin, brother, Frank and sons-in-law, Trevor, Pat and Noel.
Burial took place in St Mary’s Cemetery, where Rev Dan Bollard, PP officiated.
She is survived by her husband, Jim; son, Anthony; daughters, Margaret, Kathleen, Annemarie and Bernadette; grandchildren; brothers, Tommy, Bartley, Frank and sister, Rita. She is also mourned by her sons-in-law, sisters-in-law, brother-in-law, nephews, nieces, cousins, other relatives and a large circle of friends.
The following poem was written by her granddaughter, Vicki and read at the funeral:
Do not stand at my grave and weep,
For I am a soul At your side I’ll keep
Do not walk with your head bowed low,
Miss me a little but let me go.
I am happy and I am safe
Cared for behind heaven’s gates.
With family, Barney and more of my mates.
Rain will fall and sun will shine
I’ll watch over you with a watchful eye
Pictures and memories will forever last
God’s stairway to heaven’s gates open fast.
The wedding band will play on in your heart,
Your life’s beginning to a new start
But a funeral song now helps you depart
And as we gather before you go,
A teardrop memory will fall,
Our heart’s beating to your call.
Your face engraved in our hearts forever
Your kind words echo, end they never.
A room now empty, a heart left broken,
These words to you I left unspoken...
Nanny I love you, but it’s time to go ,
Teardrop memories run down our cheeks slow.