Mill Street, Westport
Patsy Staunton of Mill Street, Westport, passed away at Mayo General Hospital in Castlebar on Thursday 16 May, surrounded by his family. He was 77 years old. Born in October 1941 on Peter Street, Westport, Patsy was the eldest of a family of nine born to Thomas and Nora (Nonie) Staunton (née Kelly). In 1957 the family moved to Mill Street, where Thomas Staunton ran a successful tailoring business until his death in 1980. Patsy was the backbone of the Staunton family. A devoted son who cared for his mother Nonie on Mill Street until her passing in 2006 in her 91st year, Patsy’s duty of care to his family extended to his brothers Tom, Eamonn, the late Seán, Mícheál, Liam and Vincent, and for his sisters, Jo and Margaret.
As Patsy’s own siblings left the nest and married, he became a treasured brother-in-law, then a much-loved uncle and, eventually, a favoured grand-uncle. In all of his family roles, Patsy was kind-hearted, charitable, loyal, dependable, consistent, and utterly unique.
Patsy’s kindness was not just reserved for family. His generosity extended to his co-workers at Gannon’s Garage, his fellow members at St Patrick’s Drama Group, and his wide and varied network of friends and acquaintances. A founding member of Westport Credit Union, Westport Boxing Club and also of the Drama Group in 1964, Patsy was known and admired far and wide for his countless memorable performances in Westport Town Hall down through the years. Rarely the lead, Patsy was often the de facto choice to play pivotal characters, and he regularly stole the show with his impeccable timing, and inimitable delivery. But while amateur dramatics was a fulfilling part of Patsy’s life, his major passion was opera. Encyclopedic in his knowledge of tenors and sopranos past and present, Patsy was a regular visitor to see Royal Opera and English National Opera productions in London, as well as to the National Concert Hall, the Gaiety Theatre, and the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre in Dublin. In 2008 Patsy was diagnosed with cancer of the bone marrow. True to form, he just got on with things. ‘What will be, will be’ was his mantra, and his stoicism and durability in the intervening 11 years was an inspiration to many. During his countless trips to hospitals for chemotherapy sessions, bone boosters, heart checks, and a range of other treatments, Patsy never once wallowed in self-pity. Patsy wasn’t one for complaining; he just kept going.
Patsy was much loved and respected in Westport, as evidenced by the large crowds of people who queued to access Navin’s Funeral Home to pay their last respects. It came as little surprise to learn that he meant so much, to so many. Fr Gerard Quirke concelebrated his funeral Mass alongside Fr Anthony King. Readings were given by his nephew Joe Gill and niece Noreen McIntyre. Prayers of the Faithful were read by his niece Hannah, nephews Tommie, Alan, Andrew and dear friend, Gertie Foley and grandniece Aoife McIntyre. The bread and wine were brought to the altar by his sisters Jo and Margaret. Mass was further enhanced by the beautiful singing of Anne Marie Gibbons and organist Mary Gallagher.
Patsy is survived by his sisters Jo (Grealis) and Margaret (Gill), brothers Tom, Eamonn, Mícheál, Liam and Vincent. He is predeceased by his brother Seán, and his parents Thomas and Nora.
Memories of Patsy:
The family of the late Patsy Staunton would like to invite readers of The Mayo News who knew Patsy to record and submit their own personal recollections of one of Westport’s most popular and memorable characters. Whether it’s a particular memory, an anecdote, a photo, a piece of memorabilia, or even just a short word on Patsy’s impact on people’s lives, readers can submit their recollections by email to email@example.com, or by writing c/o Jo Grealis, Cloghane, West Road, Westport. Any submissions would be greatly appreciated.