A large crowd of friends, family and well-wishers gathered in the Ormonde Hotel last Wednesday evening to celebrate the launch of a new book by local writer Angela Doyle-Stuart.
Angela, a former Kilkenny People columnist who now works with local broadcaster KCLR, wrote the book ‘Loving Lisa: Stolen Life, Stolen Dreams’ about her sister, the late Lisa Doyle. Lisa’s life was tragically cut short in 2009, at the age of just 24.
Despite the grief that understandably enveloped the family, Angela decided to write a book celebrating her sister’s life, as a tribute to her memory. At a book launch that was at times both emotional and uplifting, Liam Hayes, of Hayes MacDermot Publishing, said it had been clear from as early as last June that Angela was endeavouring to create something special
“For the Doyle family, this is such a beautiful book because it puts Lisa’s life in print forevermore,” he said.
“It is one person documenting her journey and remembering her beautiful sister.”
Angela then addressed the gathering.
“I feel very humbled by this,” she said.
“My hope is that people who are dealing with loss can find some hope from it. You can cope; there is always some light there no matter how dark it is.”
She thanked her thanked her siblings Jane, Catherine and Michael, half sister Susan, her father, her husband Steven, and everyone else who supported her in writing the book.
“Lisa has always been my champion and I know that she is always there, no matter what I do.
“When we lost her I thought, Lisa’s voice is still there to be heard – why shouldn’t it be remembered? Her story will be forever out there.
“It had to be told. I thought maybe other people could feel a sense of hope from what I had written.”
Angela’s cousin, Lisa Marie Johnson, who was close to Lisa throughout her life, then read a poem, before special guest Rita O’Quigley, from Support After Homicide spoke.
“September 29 in 2010 was the last time I met Angela Doyle, and then two weeks ago I got a message saying ‘I have a book written,” she said.
“I was delighted. Congratulations Angela on not just a beautiful book but on a beautifully-written book. It is a public tribute to your late sister Lisa.
“While it is about the tragic way in which Lisa lost her life, it is also a wonderful tribute to you Angela, and your ability to talk about your own emotions and the strength of your family. Your book is not about dying, but about living.”
Angela’s book ‘Loving Lisa: Stolen Life, Stolen Dreams’ is available in shops now. For further information on Support After Homicide, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.