A former top student at Colaiste Chiarain is behind plans by a law company to give two education bursaries to potential law students.
Solicitor, Roger Murray, told stories of his new legal life west of the Shannon after he was handed the Non Resident Civic Award at the Leixlip Town Council annual awards ceremony on 10 May.
Sligo-based Roger, who comes from the Celbridge Road, is now part of the expanding Callan Tansey law firm.
He said the firm would grant a bursary to a student from each of the two Leixlip schools, Colaiste Chiarain and Confey College, this year and details would be announced in June.
Married to a Celbridge native, Iris, Roger, son of Jimmy and the late Maura, said he took pride and pleasure at the award. “You never leave home,” he told the crowd.
Speaking about the nature of the people of his home town, he said: “Maybe we Leixlip people should have more swagger but we treat people fairly and decently.”
The winners were announced by Town Council chairperson, Joe Neville, who was well briefed and known to many of the recipients.
Mr. Neville said the awards recognised largely those who volunteered and helped their community in many ways. One receipient, Pat Cooney, hit a note when he told the gathering: “The impersonal hand of government can never replace the hand of a neigbour.”
Carmel McCarthy was presented with the Social Award. A nurse with the Irish Cancer Society, she has raised thousands of euros and worked with the Parish Committee, Meals on Wheels as well as being a Eucharistic Minister.
Carmel was funny about the reaction of some to her. She told how one man told her her “nose was stuck in everything and the next thing you’ll be saying Mass.”
She said she was a small cog in the big wheel of people who make Leixlip a better place in which to live.
Cappoquin, Waterford, native and pharmacist, Emmet Feerick, who has spent 21 years in business in the town, won the Business Award. A “delighted, humbled and thrilled”, Emmet thanked the people of Leixlip for supporting him in his business. “Leixlip is a fantastic place to do business,” he said. “I look forward to the next 21 years.”
On the eve of Ireland hosting the world handball championship, Leixlip handball members, Vinny Wrynn and Sean O’Connor, received the Cultural award for services to the club formed in 1984. They paid tribute to the support of Leixlip GAA club.
Adventure sportsman and Le Cheile athletic coach, John O’Regan, won the Sporting Award.
He told how a fellow Leixlip gym member once described him in the gym preparing for a five day Sahara marathon, as “a madman with four fleeces”.
Three people were honoured in the Good Neighbour category, often doing what Cllr. Neville described as “unseen work:” Nancy Dunne, Avondale, Pat Cooney, Ryevale Lawns and Rena Lennon, Leixlip Park.
Ms. Lennon said she “had to sit down” when she got news of the award. “I will keep doing it as long as I can,” she said.
Nancy Dunne was not present. Her next door neighbour, Cllr. Theresa Byrne accepted the award on her behalf. “She is 36 years my neigbour and there was never a time when she did no help out when needed,” said Cllr. Byrne.
Cllr. Neville ended with a thank you to his wife, Caroline, and their year old baby, for their support.