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Anthony Hoban (Tony)

Obituaries

Knockranny, Westport

Anthony (Tony) Hoban passed away peacefully on August 27th 2018 surrounded by his loving family, having taken ill suddenly two days earlier. He was predeceased by his adored wife Mary (nee Staunton) in 2015 and his daughter Aoife at the age of 19 months in 1981. Anthony celebrated his 70th birthday only six weeks earlier with a surprise party in The Clew Bay Hotel. Indeed, Anthony was enjoying life to the full, attending family gatherings and celebrations, visiting people and taking mini-breaks with family throughout the country.
Anthony loved Irish history and the local history of the people of Westport. He also loved to broaden his horizons and often expressed his gratitude that his four children had provided him and Mary with opportunities to visit them in various locations around the world.  No matter where he went, he was always able to make a connection between a person or place and his beloved home town. ‘It’s a small world’ was one of his expressions.
Throughout his adult life Anthony was a member of Westport Golf Club. He spent many an enjoyable hour with his friends on the golf course, although the same could not always be said about how he played. He did however, provide the entertainment with his unorthodox swing. Anthony loved the banter with his friends and ‘rising’ each other was part of the fun.
Anthony was an avid follower of Connacht Rugby and the Irish team. Whether attending live games or watching any sport on the television, Anthony entertained everyone present with his intense spectator participation. He was overjoyed to be at Murrayfield when Connacht won the Pro 12 in 2016. He also followed his nephew Conor’s horse racing career with great interest and was lucky to have spent some time with him at his stables in recent weeks. Perhaps he had a hand in Conor’s 25/1 win as we gathered for his funeral.
Anthony was a jovial and kind-hearted man with an impeccable dress sense who made friends easily and had a welcoming word of greeting for everyone he met. Over the days when family and friends were gathered to remember him, there was many ‘a good yarn’ told. He greeted visitors and customers from out of town with a ‘Welcome to the ‘Port’.
As a young man he worked in his parents’ pub on James Street, taking it over to run it with his wife Mary when they got married. Over the years, Anthony and Mary also built a guesthouse in Knockranny and ran a taxi and chauffeur drive business. When Mary developed early onset Alzheimer’s, they wound down the business and Anthony worked as night porter in Knockranny House Hotel, The Harbour Mill Apartments and later as manager of a shop in Newport.
Anthony gave up work to become a full-time carer to Mary as her condition deteriorated. He carried out this role with dignity, respect and enormous patience. Although family, friends, neighbours and professional carers lent support, Anthony and Mary spend a lot of time alone in each other’s company at this time. It was a lonely period and even so, Anthony remained stoic and jolly throughout.
Anthony had struggled with his faith since his daughter Aoife was terminally ill, and during his time as a carer for Mary, he found comfort and solace in the community of the Church of Ireland. He was a man of great courage, who faced up to the challenges presented to him in life, drew his own conclusions and did not try to influence others. In 2012 he quietly joined the Church of Ireland with his immediate family attending the ceremony.
No matter what life threw at Anthony, he was always full of optimism and he was a marvellous fun-loving father. As a family, we had a wonderful time together, so we can’t be too sad when every memory brings a smile to our faces.