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Tommy says goodbye to St Oliver’s after 38 years teaching

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By Michelle Crean

For over 40 years, teacher Tommy Galvin has been inspiring young scholars - but that is all behind him now as he said a final farewell on Friday as he retired.

​​​​​​​The well-known and popular teacher taught in St Oliver’s Ballycasheen for over 38 years, having begun his career teaching for three years in Ballymun, Dublin.

It was a different kind of retirement from one he may have imagined this time last year, as Level 5 restrictions and the school's COVID safety measures meant that there was no big fanfare in the school hall like there'd normally be.

However, Tommy, who is known for his love of nature and inspiring pupils to get out and explore their surroundings spent the last few weeks taking classes out on nature trips as his way of saying goodbye.

Tommy, who was also Assistant Principal and central to many aspects of school life, will be hugely missed by all in school, Principal Rory Darcy told the Killarney Advertiser this week.

"A respected teacher, his love of the outdoors ensured the children in his care learned about the flora and fauna of their native place," Rory said.

"Trips to Torc, Mangerton, Muckross, the Lakes and the Old Kenmare Road brought learning outside the classroom."

Tommy’s love of local history shone through his teaching – his pupils often learning that all national and even international events can be studied in a local context, he added.

"A keen sportsman, Mr Galvin believed in ‘sport for all’ organising a wide range of sports at school and inter-school level. His contribution to the spiritual life of the pupils in his care was also considerable, particularly around Confirmation classes. His interest and pride in the hundreds of pupils he taught over the years was incredible and meeting many of them around the town or at his beloved Killarney Legion brought Tommy great joy.

For the last month and a half he has taken groups out on nature trips, Rory explained.

"On Friday to mark the occasion he brought the Sixth Classes out to the forrest for a trip to say goodbye and we had a ceremony there. Seven, including Sheila Casey Chair of the Board of Management, Fr Niall Howard, Harry O'Neill from Killarney Golf Club, Mary his wife, Sean McDermott a retired teaching colleague, Deputy Principal Tim Horgan and myself, gathered in the hall and made a presentation to him. Tommy then called to each of the zones within the school to say goodbye. We will miss him. All in St Oliver’s wish Tommy, his wife Mary and their children Myles and Honor, every happiness in the years ahead."

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Volunteers wanted for street collection

By Michelle Crean October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and local volunteers are keen to not only raise awareness but also funds. Kathrina Breen, Eleanor O’Doherty and Kathleen O’Shea who […]

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By Michelle Crean

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and local volunteers are keen to not only raise awareness but also funds.

Kathrina Breen, Eleanor O’Doherty and Kathleen O’Shea who have been supporting the Irish Cancer Society for many years are delighted to be able to get back to their Pink Ribbon street collection in Killarney town next Friday (October 7).

They are the only group in the country doing the collection as many fundraisers have moved online since the pandemic struck.

“We’re the only town in Ireland doing it this year,” Kathrina, who feels it’s important to keep a street collection going, told the Killarney Advertiser.

“We haven’t done it in two years since before COVID. I pushed to do it as it raises a lot of money. People have been supporting this for years, this money goes towards breast detection equipment, information leaflets in doctors surgeries and towards cancer grants.”

In 2021, donations helped 254 breast cancer patients with free transport to and from 2,380 chemotherapy appointments by volunteer drivers, 154 patients received 514 nights of end-of-life care from Night Nurses and 3,430 enquiries were made about breast cancer through the Freephone Support Line 1800 200 700 and at 13 Daffodil Centres across the country.

And she added that they’re looking for a few volunteers to help out on the day.

“If anyone would like to help they can contact me on 087 2612992.”

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Calls for Council to acquire vacant Rock Road properties

By Sean Moriarty There are calls to make two vacant properties on Rock Road available to Kerry County Council’s housing inventory. The two cottages, one either side of the entrance […]

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By Sean Moriarty

There are calls to make two vacant properties on Rock Road available to Kerry County Council’s housing inventory.

The two cottages, one either side of the entrance to St Finan’s Hospital, are vacant for some time.
Cllr Maura Healy-Rae raised the issue at a recent Killarney Municipal District meeting.

“Regarding two vacant houses at the entrance to St Finan’s on Rock Road which appear to be vacant for a significant period of time. One of the properties is in the ownership of the HSE. I requested that Kerry County Council would liaise with the HSE with a view to potentially acquiring this house,” she told the Killarney Advertiser after the meeting.

“I stressed that it is important that the local authority exhaust all possibilities when it comes to providing more houses, particularly properties located within the town of Killarney where the need and demand for housing is critical.”

Kerry County Council said it would get the Vacant Homes Officer to contact the owner of the privately owned bungalow.

“They will inform the property owner that there is funding available under various schemes and grants to aid the return of this property to habitable use. Such schemes include the Repair and Lease Scheme and the recently launched Croí Cónaithe vacant property grant,” said a Council official.

Cllr Healy-Rae added: “I requested that KCC would liaise with the HSE with a view to potentially acquiring this house.”

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