Michael Davitt Park, Westport, Co Mayo
Geraldine Brett who died recently, was a well-known and highly regarded member of the local community. Geraldine passed away very peacefully at her own home surrounded by her family following a short illness which she bore with great dignity and courage. Geraldine was born on September 9, 1959, the youngest of eight, three boys and five girls. She was the baby of the family and was always her Daddy’s little girl. A native of Castlebar, daughter of the late Thomas and Marie Brett.
Geraldine was a proud mother of six, two boys and four girls and devoted partner to Des. Geraldine’s family were the epicentre of her world, loving nothing more than spending quality time together and celebrating every occasion big or small. Mum was our biggest supporter and our best friend. She was proud of all of our achievements. Geraldine adored her grandchildren spending lots of time with them creating memories that will last a lifetime.
Geraldine nestled herself into the community through her work and volunteering. She became a familiar face to many families through her founding of Westport Foróige and she played a huge role in the Westport Youth Activities Club. She loved young people and they loved her. She helped to shape the lives of many young people in Westport. Many a tale we have heard of her heroic advice which guided so many in their time of need. Geraldine worked in Sharkey Hill Community Centre for 12 years and made lifelong friends there. She loved her work and her colleagues.
Geraldine loved life. She loved socialising with family and friends. Herself and Des loved nothing more than dinners out and a couple of drinks. Geraldine was an avid reader, she loved getting lost in a good book and would often finish a book in just one sitting. Among her favourite authors were Marian Keyes and Roddy Doyle.
The high esteem in which Geraldine was held was very evident, in the large numbers that gathered at the church inside and out. Her popularity amongst young and old could be seen by the huge crowds that lined the streets of Westport to pay their respects. Outside the church a guard of honour was formed by Sharkey Hill Community Centre, members of the Westport Youth Activities Club and Westport Foróige Club, as well as relations and members of the local community. People travelled from all over Ireland to bid farewell to our Mother.
The Mass which took place on Sunday, August 2, was concelebrated by Fr Charlie McDonnell and Fr Tod Nolan. The readings were read by her niece Nessa and very close friend Dawn, while the psalm ‘Be Not Afraid’ was sung by Sally and Tara Kennedy. The Prayers of the Faithful were read by her son-in-law Liam, daughter-in-law Jackie, extended partners Andrew and Ailís, niece Denise and nephew Robert.
The gifts which were brought to the altar signified the all-important aspects of Geraldine’s life. To a short commentary read by her grandson Adam, her daughter Ashlea carried a family photo symbolising her love of her family, she adored her family. Her son Eamonn carried a Mayo jersey representing Geraldine’s great love and passion for sport. Every year she dreamed that it would be Mayo’s year. Her daughter Shauna carried a soccer ball and a card signed with love by every member of Sharkey Foróige Club, representing her commitment to volunteering and her love of supporting the young. Her son Caelum brought forward the TV remote, Geraldine loved nothing better than relaxing to her favourite dramas and challenging herself on the Chase! Dónal brought up one of her favourite books to symbolise her love for reading and her passion for literature. Her beloved partner Des and daughter Erica carried the bread and wine. During Communion one of her favourites “Songbird” was sung with great passion by Zoe Davis whilst playing the guitar.
A very touching and heartfelt tribute was paid to Geraldine by her eldest son Eamonn. Her daughter Aoife recited a poignant poem penned by her brother John in California. This was a great tribute to her life. Geraldine’s favourite song “The Dance” by Garth Brooks was sung as Geraldine made her final journey to Aughaval Cemetery where she was laid to rest. One of her most loved songs “Caledonia” was sung at her graveside.
Geraldine is survived and will be sadly missed by her beloved partner Des, sons Eamonn and Caelum, daughters Aoife, Erica, Shauna and Ashlea, grandchildren Adam, Jamie and Amelia, son-in-law Liam, daughter-in-law Jackie, and extended partners Andrew, Dónal and Ailís, sisters Maura Moran (Athenry), Joan Boyle (Clontarf), Ann Duggan (Malahide), brothers Michael Brett (Castlebar), Thomas Brett (Castlebar) and John Brett (California), brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, her many nephews and nieces, cousins and extended Brett and Kennedy families and her many friends. Geraldine is predeceased by her parents Thomas and Marie, sister Gay, nephew Kenny, precious grandson Gabriel Alex– may their gentle souls rest in peace.
Geraldine Brett will always have a special place in the hearts of all those whose lives she touched along life’s journey.
May her loving and caring soul have peaceful rest. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a hanam dílis.