Nenagh says farewell to Kit Madden, 100

The late Kit Madden, Rockford, Ballycommon  Picture: Bridget Delaney
Hundreds gathered in Carrig Church this Easter Monday to say a final farewell to Kit Madden one of the area’s oldest and best known residents

Hundreds gathered in Carrig Church this Easter Monday to say a final farewell to Kit Madden one of the area’s oldest and best known residents

Kit, who would have turned 101 later this month, died on Holy Thursday, April 2. She was pre-deceased by her husband, Mick, by eight years.

Mrs Madden, from Rockford, Ballycommon, Nenagh, was born Kit Grace in 1914. She was one of nine children.

Archdeacon Canon John Hogan, who led the tributes to her at her funeral Mass, recalled that Kit was only five years old when her mother daughter and the family was subsequently raised by an aunt.

“At 15 years of age she went to work for the Grace family in Ballyanny and even though the work was hard, she always said she liked it,” said Archdeacon Hogan.

He told the mourners that on the occasion of her 100th birthday, Kit was asked about the secret of her long life and replied: “Hard work.”

Her recalled that she married Mick in 1944 and they had seven children. “Life wasn’t always easy, but she worked hard and loved life,” he said.

Archdeacon Hogan said that Mrs Madden loved her garden, her flowers, and, when she was able, her walk to the Violet Bank along the Nenagh River.

However, it was her love of cards that many will remember her by. “She played cards three nights a week and often said she would play seven nights if she had someone to bring her,” he said.

He recalled her love of reading, especially Ireland’s Own and the books of Alice Taylor, and pointed out that she had been “gifted to read up to the end of her life without glasses”.

She was also had great faith and will be missed from the local church, to where she cycled to daily Mass.

She was also very much part of the Apostolic Society, being a founder member of the local branch and last Sunday was the first Sunday that she had missed the display.

“But she wanted to know who was there, what the display was like and how much money it raised,” he said.

“Kit Madden was very interested in the local hall and the local community and thank God she was left alive for so long,” he concluded.

Archdeacon Hogan said he would not make a long speech as Kit had “laid down instructions that she wanted a simple Mass with no procession and no long speech”.

On behalf of the family, her daughter Teresa, thanked the staff at Nenagh Hospital, Dr Pat Harrold and her friends.

“There will be a large void in our hearts from now on, but everybody will have their own memories,” she said.

Ms King quoted from the lyrics of the Daniel O’Donnell song, Beyond the Rainbow’s End:

I have gone from sight but I am waiting

Just beyond the rainbow’s end

Just look up in the sky I am the sunshine

I’m the mist that rises on the summer’s morn.

Kit Maddden is survived by her daughters Anna Hadassi; Mary Sheehan (Dublin); Sheila Tuohy and Teresa King; sons Michael, Gerry and Colm; daughters-in-law, sons-in-law, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nephews, nieces, relatives and many friends. Following her funeral Mass she was buried in Monsea cemetery.