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30 Jun 2022

Tributes to amazing 'Wonder Woman' who gave her life to her family and her beloved Newcastle

Rest in Peace

Tipperary Tipperary Tipperary

Alice O’Shea, who passed away peacefully on Easter Saturday night, April 16, 2022.

The village of Newcastle recently mourned one of their great stalwarts, Alice O’Shea, who passed away peacefully on Easter Saturday night, April 16, 2022.

Alice was born in Ruan Newcastle on April 12, 1928 therefore she had recently celebrated her 94th birthday.

She is predeceased by her loving husband John and her eight siblings and Alice always had great stories and fond memories from her days in Ruan.

It’s a place that was always close to her heart.

Alice moved to Newcastle village after she got married and this is where she made her mark. She was involved in so many organisations and committees.

The Muintir na Tíre in which she was involved since its commencement in Newcastle, many the day and night she spent painting, cleaning, getting the trays ready for the card games or any other event.

She had the keys to the hall and always ensured that it was open and ready for the next event.

She was very involved even up to her passing in fundraising for the hall and diligently sold raffle tickets every year to assist with this.

The Pioneer Association was also another organisation that she was involved in. I am sure there is not a person in Newcastle who wasn’t given or offered a Pioneer Pin. But as she always said: “If I helped one person I did well.”

She was also a founder member of the local Naoinra and was always very proud of how successful it had become.

She loved nothing more but to hear the children out playing and was delighted when they bought the property next door to her as it allowed more play space for the children.

St Vincent De Paul was also another one of her involvements, she carried out her work discreetly, and confidentiality was always of utmost importance to her.

She was also involved in the local school and always had a great relationship with the teachers and pupils

In fact one of her claims to fame is that she is on YouTube being interviewed by the local school children speaking about her younger days.

She wrote weekly for The Nationalist newspaper, when she started she had to hand write the notes which she diligently delivered every Monday to The Nationalist.

Then they had to be sent by FAX and then progressed to email.

This was where she needed assistance as she said: “Computers are not my thing.” In the latter years her daughter Miriam assisted her with them but they were always diligently checked to ensure everything was included.

One of her big projects was the local BN+BCE scheme, where she continued to be involved even up to recent weeks before her passing.

With this we want to sincerely thank Mattie, Sean, Tom and colleagues for keeping her involved, she kept a close eye on the books, signed the cheques and any time they had an audit she was delighted that all at her end was always perfect.

Alice was definitely a “Wonder Woman”.

She had great faith and attended Mass daily, she was very involved in the church activities which included flower arranging, completing the rotas for the readers and Eucharistic ministers.

She loved singing in the fantastic local choir and we were delighted that they provided music for her Celebration of life Funeral Mass.

Alice had to be at the church at least a half an hour early for Mass to get “her seat”, even during lockdown without fail she had the TV Mass on daily and thanks to Christine she received the Eucharist weekly. We were honoured to have Fr Desmond celebrating her Funeral mass as they were always great friends.

Alice always said that those who died over Easter went straight to heaven. We believe she waited for Easter weekend as Easter was always a special time for her.

Also if any of her grandchildren had an exam, a county final, a driving test coming up they would also ask Nan to say a prayer which she diligently did. If they lost or failed her answer would be he just wasn’t listening today.

Nan or “Nan in Newcastle” as she was affectionately known, was so proud of her grandchildren Aoife, Ian, Bryan and Tara.

She was always interested in their academic, work and sporting achievements. They brought her great joy and she thoroughly enjoyed when they were younger bringing them off for long walks.

Every year she organised a bus trip to Knock, where a day was spent in Knock; this included a breakfast stop on the way up and dinner on the way home. Her organisational skills were impeccable and every trip always went to plan.

She also took a few trips to Lourdes.

Other organisations that she was involved in included the local céilí club, Liam Lynch Commemoration, Parish Council, Tidy Towns, Scor Na nOg, Community Alert and many more.

Her family were honoured and privileged to see the tricolours at half-mast in the village during her funeral as a mark of respect and appreciation for the exceptional person she was for the community.

Alice had wonderful family, neighbours and friends who called regularly to see her, nobody could leave without having a cup of tea, and on the way out would be told to “bless yourself with holy water and mind the step”.

Alice was definitely an example of age is only a number, her family were so proud of all she did for the local community, her family and her friends.

She was always busy helping others. Her independence and determination were to be admired, her positivity always shone.

Her family wish to thank the healthcare professionals who assisted Alice in recent months i.e. ambulance personnel, staff in South Tipp General Hospital, staff in Rathkeevan Nursing Home, staff in Home Instead and our wonderful friend Sheila who was always on hand at any time.

Condon’s Undertakers for their professionalism, the local choir who provided music for the funeral Mass, Eileen Condon for providing refreshments, Muintir na Tíre staff for the use of the Community Centre, Fr Twomey who provided prayers at the removal, Fr Desmond; her wonderful friend who celebrated her life at her funeral Mass, her wonderful family and friends who assisted us in any way. We will be forever grateful.

Alice was a devoted mother, grandmother and friend who will be sadly missed by all.
May she Rest in Peace

On Monday, April 17, Alice lay in repose in Condon’s Funeral Home Clonmel, prayers were recited by Fr Twomey, in the presence of her family, relatives, neighbours and friends before returning to her home in Newcastle.

On Tuesday, April 19, Alice left her residence and was received by her dear friend Fr Desmond and Fr Twomey at Our Lady of the Assumption Church. A guard of honour was provided by the local committees that Alice was involved in.

Reflection
We will remember her
In the rising of the sun and it’s going down
We will remember her
In the bowing of the wind and in the chill of winter
We will remember her
In the opening of the buds and in the rebirth of spring
We will remember her
In the blueness of the skies and in the warmth of summer
We will remember her
In the rustling of the leaves and in the beauty of autumn
We will remember her
In the beginning of the year and when it ends
We will remember her
When we are weary and in need of strength
We will remember her
When we are lost and sick of heart
We will remember her
When we have joys and special celebrations we yearn to share
We will remember her
So long as we live she too shall live for she are part of us
We will remember her

Alice is mourned by her loving daughters Miriam and Anne, her son in law Pat, grandchildren Aoife, Ian, Bryan and Tara, nieces, nephews, extended family and many wonderful friends and neighbours.

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