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Feature: Mayor Marie Moloney

While I was somewhat familiar with Marie, a quick google on the way out the door was quite the eye opener. I admitted as much to Marie upon arrival at the International Hotel and almost apologised for not having featured her before now.

“I’ll be the first interview in your next book Marie,” the Mayor laughed.

“Oh my goodness” I replied “I am barely over the stress of the first”. (‘Behind the Mask, Killarney’ is available in local bookshops).

Mayor Marie Moloney has a long list of voluntary work throughout her career which includes 30 years of service with Meals on Wheels, South of Ireland Bridge Club Secretary, former Boy Scout leader, Chairperson of Board of Management at Killarney Community College, Board of Management at Pobal Social Sliabh Luachra, Board of Management at Kerry ETB, Board of Management at Youth Work Kerry, Board of Management at South Kerry Development Partnership where she is currently working with a team on solar energy pilot. .

She is the Chairperson of the Board of Management for Kerry Respite Care. She on the Board of Management for Kilcummin Development Group, a former senator and continues to work in administration with SIPTU.

With her husband Mike, Marie has enjoyed 30 years with Killarney Musical Society and while she has never been on stage, she has taken many roles such as PRO and Prop Manager.

“Mike is the stage person, I’m not cut out for that but I involved myself in other ways. As the saying goes, if you can’t beat them join them”.

It really is a big deal to be Mayor of anywhere, but a beautiful town like Killarney, truly is an honour.

Marie surmised: “You must be elected by your peers on the council.”

Well, I thought, with a glowing CV as listed above, Marie Moloney is productive in every waking minute of her life and clearly an excellent candidate for the position as Mayor. My only worry is where in the world would she find the time??

“Well you know that other saying Mari, the one where it is suggested that behind every good man there is a good woman? Well in my case it’s the reverse, the credit goes to my husband Mike. I love what I do but I couldn’t have done any of it without his backing.” ”.

Marie and Mike have one daughter Leona in Kildare, an accountant for a treasury company in the USA and whio is married to Martin with two daughters Ayla and Evie. They also have one son, Michael, a well-known GP in Killarney, married to Eilish and they have four children Aoibheann, James, Oliver and Laoibhse.

“The thing I most love about Killarney is it’s people. The unity and pride amongst the community to highlight the beauty and positives always, and the efforts to showcase our great town through festivals like the 4th July, St Patricks Day, Christmas in Killarney are fine examples. The impeccable work of our tidy towns and Killarney looking good truly is outstanding,” said Ms Moloney.

“If I had a magic wand I would certainly improve the flow of traffic throughout Killarney. That would be my first port of call and after I would love to see an indoor facility such as a bowling alley for our youth.
“We have the most amazing beauty in our outdoors of Killarney but we need something for that rainy day also,” Marie replied.

She was first elected to the Killarney Municipal District in 2009, elected on to the Labour Party Panel of Seanad Eireann in 2011 and elected again once more in the 2019 local elections.

“My father canvased for Mike Moynihan. I remember being 18 living my best life with my own flat in Tralee and my father sent a driver for me to come vote at Coolick NS for Mike Moynihan.

“Afterwards I asked my father where was my driver to return to Tralee to which he replied sure he’s long gone. Can’t you get the bus back tomorrow?”

“Mike and I helped Breda Moynihan Cronin in the initial stages of her campaign and I soon became her secretary. Breda was elected to Dáil Éireann at the 1992 general election as a Labour Party TD for Kerry South, succeeding her father. When her seat was no more I continued with Breda voluntarily so when elections came around again that’s when I was elected.”

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Ireland’s oldest citizen has Killarney connections

Ireland’s oldest woman met with President Michael D. Higgins at Áras an Uachtaráin this week. Máirín Hughes, who turned 109 on May 22 has strong Killarney connections. The previous record […]




Ireland’s oldest woman met with President Michael D. Higgins at Áras an Uachtaráin this week.

Máirín Hughes, who turned 109 on May 22 has strong Killarney connections.

The previous record was held by 107-year-old Nancy Stewart who died on September 10 2021.

Although born in Belfast, Máirín went to school in the Mercy Convent. Her father was a customs and excise officer and the family moved around a lot eventually coming to Killarney after spells in County Down and Dublin.

Her mother came from the Rathmore area and her father was from Newmarket in County Cork.

She attended the Mercy Convent and has, in previous interviews, recalled growing up on the shores of Lough Lein.

“Neighbours who had three children were given the job of taking me to school,” she said. “They were annoyed because the children were going to school for two or three years but I was put in to the same class as them – my mother had taught me.”

In 2021 she featured in the book ‘Independence Memories: A People’s Portrait of the Early Days of the Irish Nation’, sharing stories of being kept in school in Killarney during an attack on the RIC barracks down the road.

In 1924 she started a degree in science and a diploma in education at University College Cork, before working in the pathology lab in University College Cork’s Department of Medicine for 16 years.

last year she recalled her story on the podcast: ‘Living History – Irish Life and Lore’.

During the broadcast she talked about her parents’ membership of the Gaelic League in 1910; the Spanish Flu in Ireland in 1918; The Black and Tans in Killarney in 1921; the early days of the new Free State; Eucharistic Congress in Dublin in 1932, visiting the Basket Islands in 1929; and working in the UCC medical laboratory from 1932 until 1948.

This week President Michael D. Higgins hosted an afternoon tea event to celebrate the important role that a variety of people have and can play in different communities and Máirín was among the guests of honour.

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Philip is running over 100kms for Cancer charity

Local runner and charity fundraiser Philip Kissane is set for the biggest challenge of his career as he lines up for the Cork City Marathon on Sunday. Phillip has already […]




Local runner and charity fundraiser Philip Kissane is set for the biggest challenge of his career as he lines up for the Cork City Marathon on Sunday.

Phillip has already completed four half marathons at various locations around Killarney – all in aid of Kerry Cancer Support Group – or the Cancer Bus as it popularly called.

This is the second time that Phillip has run four half marathon and an official race for the charity.

Back in 2021 he finished with 5km Run Killarney event but his finishing race this time around is over eight times the distance at 42kms.

“We are delighted with Philip’s continued fundraising support but also with his awareness raising for the charity,” Breda Dyland, Service Manager Kerry Cancer Support Trust.

“We are getting busier all the time and still get no statutory funding so are dependent on fundraisers like Philip’s to keep us on the road. We have just put our new wheelchair accessible bus on the Cork route so Philip’s funding will be going towards the operation of this vehicle.”


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