Fahy Beg, Newport
A veil of sadness loomed over Fahy and surrounding areas following the death of Bridie O’Haire on May 7 at her family home surrounded by her loving family.
Bridie was born on June 5, 1945, and was daughter of Michael and Mary Cawley, Massbrook, Bofeenaun. She had one brother Johnny and three sisters, Mary, Celia and Ellen. She was predeceased by her parents, Michael and Mary, her brother Johnny, sister Mary and her nephew Kevin Lynch.
Bridie lived a simple yet full lifestyle. She was a warm vibrant woman who always had a smile on her face and went out of her way to help others no matter what.
She emigrated to England when she was only 16 years of age. She met Sean and they got married in Croydon on June 24, 1964 and later that year they returned home to Fahy Beg to take over the family farm.
Bridie soon settled into family life in Fahy Beg with Sean and his mother Mary and gave birth to their first son, baby John Joseph who became an angel after four days. Bridie did what Bridie did best and picked herself up and went on to have seven more children, two sons and five daughters, whom she cared for all her life with deep love and devotion. She was a very proud wife, Mother, Nannie and Great Nannie. Family and friends meant everything to her. She loved nothing more than spending time with them and was so proud of all her family’s achievements and had a special ‘grá’ for all children and especially her 18 grandchildren whom she loved dearly. She also loved all family get togethers, catching up with all that was happening in their lives and always made time to visit them and made everyone feel welcome when they came to her home.
Bridie knew nothing else but hard work and diligently carried this out daily both in the family home and on the farm. She always took great pride in everything she did and especially loved the spring time of the year when everything came to life after the winter. She loved to hear of the baby calves and lambs being born and was exceptional at the farming, the bog, the vegetable gardening and the flowers. She was better than the latest technology when it came to calving or lambing. She would know exactly when the cow would calf or the ewe would lamb and was always on the lookout even in her last days, she was asking if the cow had calved yet!
Bridie baked and cooked daily and her bread was always a winner with everyone that was lucky enough to sample it, she loved to cook and made sure that everyone who came through the door never left hungry or without a cup of tea, and always had enough left over to send home with her family, it didn’t matter what time or how many turned up, there was always plenty to go around.
As Bridie lived a simple life one of her favourite pastimes and love was to play a game of Bingo and a game of ‘25’. She especially looked forward to attending the weekly games with her good friends in Kilmeena, Fahy and Glenhest where many a trick and laugh were had. She got great enjoyment out of teaching many how to play and was not afraid to say when the wrong move was made, or the wrong card played. She enjoyed the company and the banter that went with it all.
Bridie loved attending the Mayo matches both near and far, and would be decked out from head to toe in the red and green with the Mayo flag sticking out of the bag. She especially loved when she travelled on the bus to the away games, where she made lots of new friends from all around the county whom she called her football family . This friendship was reflected in them arranging a Guard of Honour at Bridie’s removal.
In recent years, Bridie learned how to use social media (Facebook, Snapchat) etc with her iPhone, but she had a few blips with the like and share button along the way and quickly learned how to use the delete button. She loved getting Snapchats from all her family and was able to keep up-to-date on what they were getting up to through social media.
Bridie was a very religious person and was a volunteer at Fahy church as a Minister of the Eucharist and with the Altar Society. Her faith was so close to her heart. She loved to spend time in the church and her faith flowed from her and was instilled in her family. When Bridie got ill last year, her faith kept her going. She prayed hard every day. She was overwhelmed by all the cards and religious gifts she received and very much appreciated all the prayers that were said and candles that were lit for her.
Bridies last year was very tough, but true to form she fought her illness with great courage and dignity. We, her family, are so grateful and proud to have loved and been loved by her, she continues to inspire us to embrace life with a whole heart and to cherish every moment, we miss her every day and will carry her in our hearts forever. She will be sadly missed and is irreplaceable by all who loved her.
Bridie will be sadly missed by her loving husband Sean, sons - Michael and Paul (Fahy Beg), daughters Maureen Keane, Margo Keane, Bernie Walsh (Toorgarve), Breege Birrane (Newport) and Sinead Joyce (Kilmeena), daughters-in-law Audrey and Becky O’Haire, sons- in-law Tony Keane, Ger Keane, Davie Walsh, Martin Birrane and Ger Joyce, her 18 grandchildren and one great grandson, sister Ellen Lynch (Tyrone) and Celia Mangan (Croydon, UK), sisters-in-law, brothers-in-law, nephews, nieces, cousins, relatives, friends and neighbours.