Carbury's Joan O'Rourke celebrates 90th birthday in style

Birthday girl

Conor McHugh

Reporter:

Conor McHugh

Email:

conor.mchugh@leinsterleader.ie

Carbury's Joan O'Rourke celebrates 90th birthday in style

Joan O’Rourke, (seated 2nd left) with (from left) her sister Gabrielle Harper, brother Tommy Guilfoyle, and sister Esther Bennett.

On Sunday, August 20 at Carbury GAA Club Carbury woman Joan O’Rourke celebrated her 90th birthday.

Joan is a very unique woman. Born in 1927, her own mother worked with the Countess Markievicz in Lissadell House and died when Joan was just 18 months old.

Her husband Jim worked in Bord Na Mona and died when she was 39. She suffered the greatest grief of all when she buried her beloved son Sean when he was 22.

She has lived and worked most of her life in Carbury, rearing her eight children mostly as a single parent before any of the modern day subsidies were in place.

The key to her longevity is her remarkable and determined spirit and her terrific sense of humour - in particular her use of the old fashioned pen and the Basildon Bond writing pad to get things done - long before the dot.com revolution was even heard of.

She attributes her great life to the support and love of her now very large family and her very dear friends and neighbours in the surrounding areas. They joined her and her 20 grandchildren and 26 great grandchildren.

Joan cutting the cake

Joan O’Rourke, pictured with her youngest great Grandchild, Áodhán Kirwan, at her birthday party in Carbury GAA Centre, Sunday afternoon, August 20. Photos: Tony Keane

Joan O’Rourke, (seated 2nd left) pictured celebrating her 90th Birthday with daughters Kathleen, Gabrielle, and Carmel, and sons, Phillip, Brendan, Michael, and Seamus