The last Mayor of Cashel Town Council Joe Moloney, died peacefully after a short illness surrounded by family members on Tuesday January 5th at Cork University Hospital.
The fourth of eight children born to the late Joe and Nora Moloney (nee Fitzgerald), Joe, (Joe Joe to his schoolboy name) grew up in the family home in number 50 Cathal Brugha Street, Cashel, which also doubled as the base for the family’s fruit, veg and scrap metal enterprise.
Growing up in the late 40’s early 50’s was not easy, Joe and his siblings were introduced to a hard work ethos from an early age and that early grounding remained with him all his life and when he finally called time on his working life it was as recently as September 2014 and typical of the man it was without fanfare or celebration.
Joe went to school in Cashel, first to Miss Egan, Mr Knightly and Mr Egan on the Green before moving down to the Christian Brothers on the Golden Road. On leaving school he work with his father for a time, before taking the boat to England, like so many of his generation where he worked for a number of years for the EMI Record Company, in Middlesex, London. On returning home Joe, married childhood sweetheart Bridie Philips , from McCann Street and they reared four children, David, Brian, Carol and Paula. At that time he worked in Gortdrum Mine until it’s closure in 1975, whereupon with his brothers Johnny (Boy) Mike and Timmy, they established Moloney Brothers, Fruit and Veg, which exists to this day supping fresh produce to retail and restaurants throughout County Tipperary and beyond.
He had two passions in life and which came first was a tossup, GAA and politics or more correctly Cashel King Cormacs and Fianna Fáil. Joe gave over four decades of loyal and dedicated service in numerous rolls to the CKC club. As coach and selector his team’s won West titles at all ages at juvenile level, three West Minor Hurling titles in 87,88 and 89 were augmented by two County Minor titles in 88 and 89. West and County U/21 and Junior in 1991 brought the curtain down on an impressive cv in a coaching roll. His move upstairs to administration is equally impressive. Chairman for nine years, President for five and Life Honorary President, during his time as chairman the spectator stand, clubhouse and dressing rooms were built, as well as the setting up of the club lotto and county board draw. He had a very simple mantra, the club was here before us, the club will be here after us, honour, respect and give it everything you can and stay together.
As regards politics Joe couldn’t get enough of it and he was of course dyed in the wool Fianna Fáil. He was co-opted onto the then Cashel UDC in l987 in place of Dr. Sean McCarthy, who had be made Minister for Science and Technology in the Haughey led government, Joe was elected in four subsequent elections becoming chairman in 1996.
The Term “Town Council” was introduced by the Local Government Act, 2001 from the 1st of January 2002 . The Act also provided that from January 2002 the title “Mayor” was permitted, thus Joe, became Cashel’s first Mayor and with the abolition of Town Councils in 2014 also it’s last.
In a graveside oration friend and political ally Dr.Sean McCarthy, said that Joe’s main objectives in life was to realise,succeed and to help people in every possible way and he did that with great success. He was a man of the people, a man of Cashel, honest and straight to the core, never made false promises and what could be done was done. Sean concluded by saying that Joe’s work ethic was enormous, he was tough and never wore fools. He totally respected if not always agreeing the views of opposing politicians.
Joe was also a former chairman of Cashel Handball Club and was a driving force behind the building of the Monto Carrie Alley in the 1970’s. A man who liked to place a flutter on the GG’s and an avid student of the form book, taking on the bookies was a serious business and like his other interests carried out with much success.. He was partial to a drop of the black stuff at the weekends when Bridie and himself could be seen sauntering arm in arm and dressed to the nines down the town to a favourite hostelry.
Joe’s standing in the community was very evident judging by the numbers that attended both days of his funeral. The guard of honour at the removal was one of the largest seen comprising elements of Fianna Fáil, Cashel King Cormacs, The GAA, Cashel Handball Club as well as Cross Party and Independent Politicians. Joe was laid to rest in a plot next to his parents in Cormacs cemetery. He is survived by his wife Bridie, sons Brian and David, daughters Carol and Paula, sons-in-law, daughters-in-law, grandchildren, brothers Timmy and Tommy, sister Tricia, brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, nephews, nieces, relatives, neighbours and many friends. He was predeceased by his parents Joe and Nora, brothers John and Michael, sisters Eileen and Mary.
May He Rest In Peace