Picture gallery: Family and friends celebrate book about Jake Brennan at Kilkenny launch

‘Mammy I Don’t Want to Die’ is the heartbreaking book by Roseann Brennan

Sam Matthews

Reporter:

Sam Matthews

Email:

sam.matthews@kilkennypeople.ie

Family and friends turned out in force last Wednesday night for the launch of a new book by Roseann Brennan, the mother of Jake Brennan who died when he was hit by a car in the Lintown area of Kilkenny in June 2014.

‘Mammy I Don’t Want to Die’ is a heartbreaking description of the events of that day, life with Jake before the tragedy, and how the family attempted to come to terms with it. The book was launched with the help of hurling legend Henry Shefflin and Sinn Fein leader Mary Lou McDonald in Langton’s Ballroom.

MC for the evening Eimear Ní Bhraonain said that even those who had never met Jake would remember his cheeky grin, thanks to the efforts of Roseann and Jake’s dad Chris to keep his memory alive.

“I don’t know any campaign that could have been as successful, because who could say no to you?” she said to Rosie.

Henry Shefflin said the book would touch the heart. Mary Lou McDonald recalled the night Roseann first knocked on her door to talk to her. She said everyone should read the book and hear its message.

“Roseann has done more than simply reduce speed limits,” she said. “She actually managed to challenge some of the lazy thinking that we’re not even conscious of.”

When Roseann spoke, you could hear a pin drop in the room.

“The book is very much not just about Jake’s Legacy. It’s about trying to find myself after being thrown into a nightmare in seconds,” she said.

“While I was trying to find myself I lost my husband, I lost my kids — doubted myself as a parent and everything.”

Roseann said she does feel stronger today, but she does not feel like the same person she was.

“But I don’t want that Rosie back. I want the Rosie for Jake, but I don’t want that Rosie back because she didn’t appreciate stuff. She appreciated stupid objects,” she said.

“Life is about family and it’s about making memories. And trust me, when someone is gone and it’s only memories you have...

That’s all you’ll be left with — it’s not about what you’ve got in your house or what car you drive, this or that. It’s memories, and that’s my main thing now.”

The book is available in local bookstores or online here.