(Details and narrative provided by Michael Dawson - with thanks)
Mrs Josephine Kealy 22/12/08 Carrigslaney, Kilbride 85
The death took place, following a short illness, at St. Luke’s Hospital, Kilkenny on Monday, December 22 of Mrs. Josephine Kealy (nee Doyle).
Her remains were removed from her daughter’s residence, Mullaunmore, to the Church of SS. Peter and Paul, Ballon on Wednesday, December 24 and burial took place in Ballon Cemetery following Requiem Mass.
The late Mrs. Kealy, is survived by her daughter, Mary McCourt, Mullaunmore, Ballon, sons Mick (Carrigslaney) and Jim (Closh), and by her son-in-law, daughters-in-law, and six grandchildren. She was predeceased by her husband, Paddy, in 1988.
Mrs Mary Nolan 9/12/08 Kilcoole, Rathoe 69
A native of Glynn, St. Mullins, she was aged 69. Mary worked in Odlems in St. Mullins in her early years but spent most of her working life in St. Dympnas Hospital, Carlow. She married Michael Nolan in 1968 and the couple had five children. She was a gifted lady, sewing and knitting, and sent Aran cardigans on contract to America. She was a member of the Rathoe Active Retirement Group and particularly enjoyed her trips with that Group.
Mary’s remains were removed from Kearney’s Funeral Home in Fenagh to St. Patrick’s Church, Rathoe on Thursday, December 11 and interment took place in the adjoining cemetery after Requiem Mass.
The late Mrs. Nolan is mourned by her husband, Michael, sons Jimmy, Johnny and Michael, daughter Teresa and by her daughters-in-law, grandchildren, brothers, brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, nephews, nieces and a wide circle of friends. She was predeceased by her infant daughter, Kathleen.
Mr P J Keating 27/11/08 Rathoe 65
There was deep sorrow in the Rathoe, Milford and Ballinabranna areas of County Carlow following the sudden death of P.J. Keating, Rathoe.
P. J. was a native of Milford and worked as an Agricultural Contractor before buying a farm in Rathoe in 1983. His main joy in both contracting and farming was growing and harvesting sugar beet. He was a model farmer, always paying great attention to detail.
In 1974 he married Ciss Coady from Rathgeran, Ballymurphy and the couple had one son, Padraig. Cheery and outgoing, P. J. loved socialising, music and drama and was a regular attendant at the Evenings of Song and Story in Rathoe and at productions by the Carlow Little Theatre Company. Although a very sociable man there was also a very private and deeply religious side to P.J.
As a young man he played Gaelic football with his native Milford and was delighted when the club reformed in recent years. He also was involved with Carlow Rowing Club and competed in regattas for a time.
Travel was another of P.J.’s great loves and he and Ciss had just returned from Tenerife where they had celebrated their 34th wedding anniversary on the week before he died.
His remains were removed from his home to St. Patrick’s Church, Rathoe on Saturday, November 29 and burial took place in the adjoining cemetery on the following day after Requiem Mass concelebrated by Very Rev. Brendan Howard PP and Fr. Fintan Burke, Capuchin Order, and a friend of the family.
P. J., who was the last surviving member of his own family, is mourned by his wife, Ciss, son Padraig, daughter- in-law Deirdre, brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, nieces, nephews, other relatives and a large circle of friends.
Mrs. Kathleen Duncan 11/08 Luton (Kilnock)  
Mrs Kathleen Walsh whose remains was interred in Ballon cemetery on Friday, November 7 was formerly Ms Kathleen Walsh from Kilnock.
She had lived in Luton, England for close on 50 years where she is survived by her husband, Terry and five daughters. She is also survived by her brother, John and sister Dympna (Kilnock) and sisters, Hannah and Esther in England.
Jack Dowling 30/10/08 Kellistown 89
The death took place at his residence, Kellistown, Carlow on Thursday, October 30 of Mr. Jack Dowling following a long illness.

Aged 89, the late Mr. Dowling work for most of his life with the Irish Land Commission and had a spell with Lapple (Ireland) before retiring.

As a young man he was very involved in Drama and played in many productions with the Ballon Drama Group. He was also actively involved with Rathoe Hall Committee while his hobbies included bingo and card playing.

His remains were removed from his home to Saint Patrick’s Church, Rathoe on the evening following his death and burial took place in the adjoining cemetery after Requiem Mass on November 1st.
The late Mr. Dowling is survived by his wife, Sheila, daughter Marie Doran (London), sons, Seamus (Ballon Hill), Sean (Carlow), Ger (Ballickmoyler), Michael (Ballybromhill) and Liam (Fighting Cocks) and by his grandchildren, great-grandchild, sister-in-law, nephews and nieces.
Stan Brophy 28/10/08 Castlemore  
The death took place on Tuesday, October 28 of Stan Brophy, Castlemore. He died at St. Luke’s Hospital, Kilkenny.

Stan Brophy was known throughout the country as a most progressive farmer and businessman. One of his great qualities was his generosity in sharing his knowledge and expertise with fellow farmers and people involved in the Agri-Business.

He was son of the late Patrick and Margaret Brophy and was predeceased by his wife, Joan in 1978. He was also predeceased by his brothers Fr. Gregory, Fr. P.J., John and Brendan and by his sister, Elizabeth Ann (St. Joseph, Irish Sisters of Charity).

He is survived by his son John (Castlemore), Joseph (Oregon, USA), and daughter, Mary (Napier, New Zealand.

His funeral mass was celebrated by Very Rev. Brendan Howard PP in St. Patrick’s Church, Rathoe on Friday, October 31 and interment took place immediately afterwards in the adjoining cemetery.
Michael (Mike) O'Toole 21/6/08 Ballynunnery, Rathoe 49

The death of Michael (Mike) O’Toole, Ballynunnery, Rathoe caused widespread sorrow and regret throughout the communities of Rathoe and Ballon and indeed much further afield. The 49-year-old father of three passed away at his residence on Saturday morning, June 21 in the care of his loving wife, Mary and immediate family.

Born on February 5, 1959 Mike was the third child and eldest son of the late Ger and Teasie O’Toole. He was educated at Rathoe National School, Good Council College, New Ross and the Patrician Brothers Secondary School in Tullow. After completing his education he returned to work on the family farm with his father and brother, John.

They continued to develop and modernise and together the brothers built up an extensive dairy and beef farm. They were also involved in hire work, silage cutting etc.

In 1984 Mike married local girl Mary Eustace from Castlemore and the couple had three children, Kate, Eoin and Shauna. He was a very dedicated family man and hard worker but still lived life to the full. He was a hugely sociable person and was the life and soul of any gathering or party he attended.

His main social interest was motorbikes and motorbike racing and had owned bikes from the age of sixteen. He frequently attended the North West Races in Portrush and Portstewart in Northern Ireland and more locally at Skerries and Mondello. For many years he acted as a steward leading the Carlow to Cork cycle race in aid of the Irish Wheelchair Society as well as other charitable cycling events. He was also an active fundraiser for the Tullow Branch of the Irish Alzheimer’s Association.
An obvious lover of speed and thrills, Mike also acted as co-driver for Sam Smyth for a number of years in the Carlow Rally. His other interests included shooting, documentaries and especially music and regularly attended concerts in Dublin. He was a particular fan of Wexford musician, Pierce Turner.

Mike’s remains were removed from the family home to St. Patrick’s Church, Rathoe on Monday June 23 and burial took place in the adjoining cemetery immediately following Requiem Mass where the chief celebrant was Fr. Brendan Howard, soon to be Parish Priest of Ballon and Rathoe. The other con-celebrants were Fr. Edward Whelan PP, Ballon/Rathoe; Fr. Tom Little, Bennekerry; Msg. Brendan Byrne, Tullow; Fr. John Byrne, Dublin; Fr. Paddy Byrne, Bagenalstown; Fr. Lar Fleming, Clonegal; Fr. Billy Flynn, Glenbrien and Fr. Paddy Browne, Enniscorthy.

John Kelly of the traditional Ballad Group ‘Roisin Dubh’ provided the music in the church while the graveside prayers were recited by Fr. Howard.

Mike’s friends in the motorbike world provided a Guard of Honour at the removal of remains and members of the Fighting Cocks GAA Club did likewise at the funeral. The attendance was one of the biggest ever seen in Rathoe bearing full testimony to the popularity of Mike O’Toole.

Mike is mourned by his loving wife Mary, son Eoin, daughters, Kate and Shauna, brothers John and Peter (both Ballynunnery), sisters Marie Garahy (Enniscorthy), Jo O’Toole (Ballynunnery) and Geraldine Healy, Glenbrien, Enniscorthy and by his uncle, aunts, mother-in-law, sister-in-law, brothers-in-law, nieces, nephews, extended family members, neighbours and a large circle of friends.

May he rest in peace.
Mrs. Catherine McCall 13/5/08 Ballon Hill  
The death took place at her residence on Tuesday, May 13th following a long illness, bravely fought, of Mrs. Catherine (Katsy) McCall, Ballon Hill, Ballon. She was formerly Ms. Katsy Whelan, Ballykealey.
Katsy started her work career from an early age helping her father, Patrick, on the milk lorry runs with Midland Dairies and helping out in her parents shop ‘The Slip Inn’, at Ballykealey.
She worked in Courtown for a period before she met Pat McCall and the couple married in 1971and had a family of six girls and two boys.
She was a great lover of music, song and dance and was an accomplished accordion player.
Her remains were removed from her home to the Church of SS. Peter and Paul, Ballon on Thursday evening, May 15 and burial took place in Ballon cemetery after Requiem Mass, celebrated by Very Rev. Edward Whelan PP, on the following morning. The attendance at the removal of remains and funeral was one of the largest seen in the area for some time.
The late Mrs. McCall is mourned by her daughters Noeleen Richards (Celbridge), Patricia Cooney (Ballon), Meave Maher (Kilbricken), Antoinette Cummins (Closh), Pamela McCall (Ballinrush), Thelma McCall (Tullow), sons P. J (Ballon Hill) and Michael (Feanagh), brothers Thomas (Connaberry) and P.C.(Ballykealey), sons-in-law, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, aunt, uncle and her caring partner, Pat Abbey. She was predeceased by her husband in 1998.

Mr Patrick Nolan 11/3/08 Kilcoole, Rathoe 82
The death took place, following a long illness, at the Sacred Heart Hospital, Carlow. The late Mr. Nolan worked as a driver with Carlow County Council for over 40 years before his retirement in 1988.
His remains were removed to St. Patrick’s Church, Rathoe on Thursday evening, March 13 where they were received by Very Rev. Edward Whelan PP and Fr. Lar Fleming PE. Burial took place in the adjoining cemetery after requiem mass celebrated by Fr. Whelan on the following morning.
He is survived by his wife, Bridget, brother, Joe (Bendenstown), sister, Sr. Kathleen Nolan, Mercy Order and by his brother-in-law, sisters-in-law, nephews and nieces.

Mrs Breda Esmonde
6/3//08 Ballintrane, Fenagh 86
The deceased was formerly Ms. Breda Ryan and was a native of Paulstown, County Kilkenny. A dedicated wife and mother, her main interests were in her family and farming. She was also involved in Garryhill ICA and took a keen interest in gardening.
Her remains were removed from Healy’s Funeral Home, Carlow to St. Patrick’s Church, Rathoe on Saturday, March 8 and burial took place in the adjoining cemetery on the following day after requiem mass con-celebrated by Rev. Paddy Byrne CC, Bagenalstown and Very Rev. Edward Whelan PP, Ballon/Rathoe. The late Mrs. Esmonde is survived by her sons, Sean (Fighting Cocks), Seamus (Ballintrane), daughter Mrs. Maureen Lee (Malahide), sisters Sr. Berchmans (St. Patrick’s Hospital, Cork), Sr. Margaret Mary (Wolverhampton), brother, Sean (Paulstown), son-in-law, daughters-in-law, grandchildren, greatgrandchildren, nephews and nieces. She was predeceased by her husband, James, in 1993.

Lawrence Nolan 28/1/08 Gilbertstown  84
The late Mr. Nolan was a strong GAA stalwart and played with both The Fighting Cocks and Tullow clubs, winning two County championships and three league titles with the latter. He was full forward on the Carlow team defeated by Louth in the Leinster championship in 1957, the year that Louth won their only All-Ireland and he was on the Carlow team that played Antrim at the official opening of Casement Park in Belfast. Following his playing days he turned to refereeing and he also trained the Fighting Cocks to Junior Championship success in 1970.
In 2000 he was the recipient of the Hall of Fame Award from both The Fighting Cocks and Tullow clubs.
Burial took place in St. Patrick's Church cemetery after requiem mass, concelebrated by Very Rev. Edward Whelan PP, Rev. Eddie Aughney and Rev. Tom Dillon, on Wednesday, January 30. The Fighting Cocks Club provided a Guard of Honour at the removal while many of his former Tullow teammates and officials were in attendance.
The late Mr. Nolan is survived by his sister Hannah (Bendenstown), stepson, Jimmy (Gilbertstown), stepdaughters, Gretta Dowling (Tullow) and Babs Pearson, (Baltinglass) and by his nephews and nieces. His wife, Ada, predeceased him in 2000.