Sunday, July 24, 2016

Lally Lawlor RIP

Lally Lawlor died this morning in Ocean View Nursing Home, Camp, Co Kerry.

She is survived by her daughter Mary, sons Tom, Paul and John, sisters-in-law, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Lally was in her 102nd year.

Her son, Paul, is a Dominican priest, who lives in the Islamic Republic of Iran.

I got to know Lally close to 20 years ago. We became great friends. Lally, a refined lady, who was loyal to her church, was a woman of great dignity. She also had a sense of humour, always a touch of roguery in those eyes.

She was born in Wicklow but spent most of her life in Kerry, where her late husband was a GP.

A woman of many talents, including painting. Some of her works hang in my house in West Kerry.

It was probably in 1999 that Lally was close to dying. I arrived and she 'forgot' to die. I tell that story tongue-in-cheek. We were such good friends. I jokingly recall the incident as my first step on the road to 'canonisation'.

It was part of the jigsaw in our relationship. Lally was at all times polite and respectful. Not qualities people might easily associate with me, and yet her eyes always lit up when I walked into her home and later, her room in the nursing home. Lally's kind words about priests and the institutional church would be complemented by my different approach to its ministers and the institution. But we could both laugh about it all.

Even with her 101 years I was not expecting her to die, though, on Thursday, I was with her and it was clear that life was draining from her body.

Camp will be a different place without Lally.

1 comment:

Póló said...

It is nice to mark such passings with personal comments.