I heard earlier today that John McDonnell died. He was my father’s first cousin and a native of Fauleens, Monasteraden. Daddy and John were in Coolavin school together. John, his wife Teresa and some of his family attended my ordination. A few years later I went to visit John and Teresa in White Plains, New York and felt very welcome in their home. I have fond memories of my times with them and their family. I have met him nearly every year and always felt that sense of welcome. “Boy, your room is always there”, he’d tell me and I know he meant it.
John had a phrase that used puzzle me “Between you and I …. ” The first few times he said it to me I panicked thinking this was a family secret that I’d have to carry to my grave 🙂 I realised, in time, it was just a phrase – nothing to it but it meant he wanted to talk about something. He maintained a great interest in home and a love for home. Sadly, in more recent years, he was unable to travel to Ireland but regular calls from his nephew Seán, letters and more kept him in touch.
I want just to mention him here – to record his death on my little piece of cyberspace. A lot have gone in the past two years – they’re all missed. John is now numbered among them.
May he rest in peace.