The late Mrs Mary Lynch

Community in shock after passing of much loved resident

We all love our parish no matter what part of the county we come from. In every parish, there are communities big and small. We have them here in our proud parish of Ballintemple, Bruskey but one of them, it’s a vibrant place right in the middle with around 30 houses close by. Add to that our own St. Mary’s Church, St Patrick’s NS, a community centre and the busy Argue store, and winding its way through the peaceful and tranquil setting is the River Erne.

Sadly all of this received a terrible and sad shock on the morning of Wednesday, November 9 when Mrs Mary Lynch died very suddenly at her residence. It stunned us all to try to take in that the gentle and caring person, a loving wife, mother and daughter, sister and grandmother was gone in the twinkling of an eye.

Mary nee Brady came to live among us when she married Johnny Lynch, way back in 1981. She came from another lovely community, a place named Ennybegs in the parish of Killoe. She was 20 years old and a psychiatric nurse and trained in St Loman’s Mullingar and Johnny was in construction, both were really hard workers.

The family became bigger with the birth of the firstborn John and then sadly baby Paul died shortly after birth. Time passed on and along came Jason and Aisling.

Alongside all of this Mary took over the running of a post office when the long serving Jimmy Loughlin retired. Her first day on the job was December 1, 1982. It was a pleasure to call to her and transact whatever the business was, and she did this professionally always with a smile on her face and was more than helpful if a customer needed. It would be a sad day when the post office closed its doors for the last time.

Mary’s home that she loved so dearly, was kept immaculately inside and out, with never an item out of place and all shining and bright. Anytime you passed you could see her cleaning the windows and as somebody remarked: she would catch the dust before it fell.

She was wonderful, kind hearted and warm. She was always caring in times of sickness or need and one of her very last deeds was visiting and bringing dinner to her dear neighbour Tommy Clerkin, who had just returned from hospital.

What was to be a very happy and memorable occasion was just around the corner as she and her family circle were putting the final touches to a big celebration for her father Michael’s 90th birthday on December 4. Alas for her it wasn’t to be. Her loving mother Anna Mae passed away while undergoing surgery on St Valentine’s Day in 2008.

Mary had a great faith and her rosary beads were never far away. She prayed every day and just down the road, at St Mary’s Church, she would be a regular Mass goer. I can recall her being part of the choir years back.

Busy as Mary was, there was time for trips abroad to America where she spent two months this summer, returning in August. She visited many places in and around New York. She made many new friends and amazed them with beautiful cooking and served them all with a full Irish breakfast. A trip to see Niagra Falls was also taken in, and every minute of the break was so much enjoyed and talked about. Sadly it would be her last.

She was a great cook whether at home or away and no one could vouch for that better than her own family, especially her husband Johnny. He headed off to work every day with a packed lunch fit for a king, including a medical kit should he have an accident.

The onset of Covid changed many lives and brought a lot of trauma to home. No more so than to Mary and Johnny as their darling Aisling was away in Australia battling a serious illness and not a hope of them getting to her, such were the restrictions. All they could do was hope and pray for her recovery, which she did thank God. Afterwards she talked of the wonderful care she got from our friends over there who were with her every step of the way during her recovery.

Mary looked forward so much to Aisling home coming which would have been on December 1 so she could hold and hug her darling, sadly that was not to be.

The month of November is a time when we visit loved ones’ graves and just recently Mary did that in Mullaghboy and she was heard to remark to neighbours that she was moved and taken aback by the number of young people gone to their eternal reward. Little did we know her time was nigh.

Her love of family was embedded in her heart, always making sure they were happy and never wanted for anything. Her two grandchildren Cara and Lucy were her pride and joy and gave her a new lease of life.

While very much a home bird she really enjoyed family and social occasions when she met with friends for a chat and a nice glass of wine, which went down a treat.

She was part of the group who have an annual get together of old school classmates and this year a trip was planned for Co Clare.

With the season of Christmas fast approaching we recall the beautifully decorated tree that always adorned her hallway window. She would spend a day working on this work of art, such was her patience and taste, just like her sense of dress and hairstyle, pure elegance.

When somebody as loving and caring and gentle as Mary passes away there were so mourners that came and lots more from the community.

When her remains were brought home for her waking it was a homecoming like no other with the community in shock and mourning, who turned out in huge numbers lining the road to her residence and each holding a lighted candle that gently flickered on a remarkably calm and mild November night. Many tears were shed in the midst of it all.

Mary reposed on Saturday and Sunday and the crowds that passed through the family home were never seen in Bruskey before, and included a guard of honour from Lacken GFC.

On Monday morning, crowds gathered around her funeral cortege and travelled the short distance to St. Mary’s Church where her funeral Mass was celebrated by Father Sean McDermott and it was assisted by Reverend Jim Brady. It was a beautiful celebration of prayers, music and song and the choir was in full voice under the leadership of her brother-in-law Con Holton with a lovely rendition of ‘Around the Throne Tonight’ sung by Sean Lynch.

John spoke glowingly on behalf of the family on the life and times of his dear mother.

Afterwards her body was taken to the cemetery where she was laid to rest beside her wee angel son Paul and many from the community and beyond stood in observance.

To her husband, Johnny sons John and Jason, daughter Aisling, her father Michael, sisters Martina and Geraldine, brother Padraig and extended family we would like to send our most heartfelt and deepest sympathies.

* Obituary was compiled by Danny Brady.