The death has occurred of Aidan Kennedy – an absolute giant of community life in Ballinakill.
He was postmaster in the village for over 50 years, secretary of the Ballinakill GAA club for more than 40 years, a member of the church choir and the man who called the bingo numbers for generations.
A community activist to the last, he was also visible at the Abbeyleix meeting of the Save Portlaoise Hospital campaign last year. Aged 81, he died at home expectantly this morning.
Only last week a presentation was made to him at Ballinakill mass for his contribution to community life.
Aidan is survived by his wife Sadie, seven children Aidan, Brian, Luke, Declan and triplets Jane, John and Des and his grandchildren.
The Post Office closed earlier this year due to Aidan’s ill health combined with the national government policy of shutting down a number or rural post offices.
Aidan took over the running of the Post Office following the death of his mother Jane. Prior to that his aunt Julia – his father’s sister – had run it.
Between them they ran the Post Office right back almost to the foundation of the state.
Initially the office was in his house in the village but until it closed earlier this year they were in the same building in the village since 1992.
“Aidan will be a huge loss to the parish, the club, the community and the area in general,” said Mairead Fitzpatrick, the current secretary of Ballinakill GAA club.
“It’s a big shock to us all. We knew he wasn’t well but he went quicker than we thought. In relation to the GAA he held almost every position in the club and he was active selling lotto tickets up to a couple of weeks ago.
“His family are heavily involved in the club too – Brian and Declan are on the committee and Luke is coaching juveniles.”
Aidan is deeply regretted by his loving wife Sadie, daughter Jane, sons Aidan, Brian, Luke, Declan, John and Des, sister-in-law, son-in-law, daughters-in-law, grandchildren, nephews, nieces, neighbours, relatives and friends.
He will be reposing at his residence from 7.30pm on Monday evening with Rosary at 9pm. Rosary at 9pm on Tuesday evening also.
Removal on Wednesday morning at 10.30 am to St. Brigid’s Church, Ballinakill for Funeral Mass at 11 am. Burial afterwards in St. Brigid’s Cemetery.
May he Rest in Peace.
SEE ALSO – Ballinakill postmaster celebrates 50 years in the job