ex NT, The Bridge, Louisburgh, Co Mayo
The death occurred suddenly at her home in Louisburgh of Mary O’Malley on July 16, 2020.
Mary was born in 1939 in Brackloon, Westport, to parents Dan and Brigid Heraty. She was the eldest of two girls. Mary had a happy childhood in Brackloon, where they had a shop and went to Brackloon National School, from there Mary attended Sacred Heart School, Westport, for her secondary education.
Mary went to England in 1958 to Richmond, North Yorkshire and began teaching. Here she met some life long friends. Mary attended Swinton Day Training College in South Yorkshire on teacher training. She qualified as a teacher in 1963 and went on to live and teach in Bradford. In 1966 Mary went to London and taught in Forest Gate, East London.
Mary enjoyed her time in England and had fond memories of her time spent there with her friends.
On a trip home for Christmas in 1966 to Westport, Mary met the love of her life Paddy at a dance in Westport town. Mary began planning to move back to Ireland in 1967. On her return to Ireland, Mary spent one year teaching in Wicklow. She and Paddy got married in August 1968 and she moved to live in Louisburgh, where they raised their family of four boys, Donál, John, Anthony and Patrick.
Mary got a job teaching in Belderrig, North Mayo, after she got married. Shortly after this she got a teaching job in St Anthony’s School, Castlebar. In 1970 Mary was appointed principal of Thallabawn National School, she spent five years teaching in Thallabawn before moving to the newly built school in Killeen in 1975. Mary spent the rest of her teaching career in Killeen National School where she taught junior and senior infants. Mary was a kind and caring teacher.
Mary taught in Killeen for thirty years until her retirement in 2005. She enjoyed her retirement as it gave her more time to spend on her hobbies and pass times. She loved gardening and spent many happy hours in her garden at The Bridge. She loved cycling and would cycle daily down to her beloved Carrowmore Strand for a walk on the beach. Mary loved nature and the beautiful landscape around her. She also loved baking and making her own jam.
Mary had great friends in Louisburgh, she was involved in different organisations. She helped fundraise for Western Care in the local community. Mary loved knitting and was a member of the local knitting group in Louisburgh. Mary was also involved with the Louisburgh Pioneers (PTAA) for years, and The Legion of Mary.
Mary loved reading and was regularly up and down to the library in Louisburgh. She also loved meeting her past pupils and to finding out how they got on in life. Mary had a strong faith, it was this strong faith that helped her through her sorrow when she lost her beloved son Anthony in 2008.
Mary and Paddy were married for nearly 52 years and they loved each other dearly. Mary loved her grandchildren and was delighted to see them visiting. She never lost the teacher in her and would read to them regularly and helped to teach them how to count.
Fr Mattie Long celebrated a lovely funeral Mass for Mary in St Patrick’s Church, Louisburgh. Although the Covid-19 restrictions constrained many from attending Mary’s funeral ceremonies, friends and neighbours lined the roadside to pay their respects from her home in Louisburgh to St Patrick’s Church and also on the final journey to Kilgeever cemetery where she was laid to rest.
Mary was a kind, caring and gentle lady with a radiant smile and will be sadly missed by her family; her loving husband Paddy, sons Donál, John and Patrick, sister Kathleen Tunney, grandchildren Joshua, Anabelle, Kate, Máire and Anthony, brothers-in-law Jim and Tony, daughters-in-law Katherine and Tracy, nephews, niece, extended O’Malley and Heraty families, cousins and many friends and neighbours. May her gentle soul rest in peace.