Kathleen, (née O’Connell), was born in Killernan, Kilmaine in 1918 into a family of three boys and eight girls. Her father, Thomas O’Connell, died in 1948 and her mother Catherine (née Casey) died in 1964.
Kathleen received her primary education at Kilmaine NS and the Convent of Mercy in Ballinrobe where she completed the Leaving Certificate course through Irish in three years. After some years at home, she went to London where she worked as a clerk in the GPO during World War Two. Despite the war-time hardships, rationing and dangers, she always had fond memories of her time in England.
She returned to Kilmaine after the war ended and in 1953 she married Michael “Sonny” Delaney who died five years ago. They had two sons, Gerard and Michael Joseph. The death of Michael Joseph in a car accident in 1981 was an enormous loss to the family but she bore it with great courage and Christian resignation.
Down the years, Kathleen was involved in various religious societies including the Apostolic Work Society, Charismatic Renewal and the Perpetual Adoration Group at Roundfort church. She was also a promoter of several religious magazines.
Until the onset of her final illness, she served as a Eucharistic minister at Roundfort church and attended Mass on a daily basis. In her younger days, she made a yearly pilgrimage to Lough Derg and also went on pilgrimage at various times to Fatima and Medjugorje.
At home, she was an avid reader and took a keen interest in current affairs and sport, especially horse-racing. She kept up to date with technology, enjoyed the internet and e-mail and regularly watched satellite television, particularly EWTN and the Discovery Channels. She was also an avid follower of the goings-on in “Coronation Street.”
Kathleen was a regular bingo player at Roundfort and Hollymount where she greatly enjoyed meeting her neighbours as well as making new friends. She also loved gardening and cooking but her main interest was in her grandchildren, whom she helped every evening with their homework and regularly went to see them participate in sports, concerts and competitions.
Her gentle disposition endeared her to one and all. She was always helpful and gracious and exuded a serene and tranquil nature. Kathleen cherished her family and friends and was a wonderful neighbour who could always be relied on to lend a helping hand and words of kindness and encouragement. It was a privilege to have known her and she will be greatly missed by her devoted family and all who knew her. May her gentle soul rest in peace.
Her removal took place from the recently opened Roundfort Community Funeral Home to the Church of the Immaculate Conception, where her Requiem Mass was concelebrated by Fr. Michael Molloy (Roundfort), Fr. John Fallon, (Kilmaine), Fr. Paddy Sheridan (Robeen), Fr. Austin Fergus (Mayo Abbey) and Canon William Walshe (Roundfort). The choir was led by Helena Curran-Bell and the Readings were read by her son Gerard while her relatives Maura Hannon, Catherine Owens, Kathleen Barrett and Michael John Mullen read the Prayers of the Faithful. Burial took place in the family plot at Roundfort Cemetery.
She is survived by her son Gerard, daughter-in-law Yvonne, grandchildren, Michelle, Stephanie, Danielle, Louise and Harry, her brother Monsignor Padraic O’Connell (Sydney), her sisters Sr. Vera (Melbourne) and Mrs. Noreen Moloney (Wagga Wagga, Australia), brother-in-law Johnny Barrett (Rathcash, Killala) and her cousin and dear friend Mrs. Phil Mullen (Kilkeeran, Kilmaine), relatives and friends.