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Yulia Liventsova: I am happy because I do what I love

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By Natalya Krasnenkova

In her 47 years Yulia Liventsova has twice fled from war. Living in Europe in the 21st century, she was again forced to leave her home, hastily collect things, go into the unknown and start her life over.

Yulia comes from Donetsk, the east of Ukraine. In 2014, when the city was taken over by pro-Russian militants, who set up the Donetsk People's Republic there, she urgently left for Odessa with her husband and pregnant daughter.

The whole life of the family fit in the trunk of a small car.

In the southern city near the Black Sea, Yulia began a new life. She is a cook by profession and in Odessa, she worked in a restaurant as a chef.

From February 24, since the beginning of Russia's military invasion of Ukraine, her restaurant has started preparing free lunches for the Ukrainian military. Yulia Liventsova spent many hours in the kitchen to feed our soldiers.

And when the Russian army occupied the neighbouring city of Kherson (now under Russian occupation), Russia began firing rockets from their ships located in the Black Sea, targeting Odessa. Yulia’s husband made an important decision; he put his wife, daughter and granddaughter in the car to take them to the border with Moldova.

"You have to go to save the child and the granddaughter, and I will stay here to help your old mother," he said.

And Yulia left. For a month they lived with acquaintances in the vineyard, and then moved to Ireland.
Not knowing a word of English, with two T-shirts and two pants in a suitcase - this was the beginning of a new chapter for her life in Ireland.

Yulia is a bright, small and strong woman. She laughs a lot and does a lot for people. There were not enough cooks at the Eviston Hotel where she stayed. Yulia offered her help. Now she is a sous-chef in the restaurant.

"I was ready to work as a volunteer, but in Ireland, everyone who wants to work has this opportunity, even without a good knowledge of the language,” Yulia said.

HARD WORKING

Her working day is from 9am to noon in the kitchen, then she has a three-hour break. What is she doing at this time? She attends English language courses daily then returns to the kitchen in the afternoon and works until 10pm.

When Julia has a day off, she goes to the pool.

Yes, Yulia is in great physical shape and recently got a new tattoo - the national symbol of Ukraine - a huge trident on her shoulder.

Recently, for the Ukrainian Day at the K-Fest in Killorglin, Yulia organised a day of Ukrainian cuisine. To do this, she gathered a team and spent more than 10 hours in the kitchen to prepare traditional Ukrainian borsch, dumplings and compote. The next day, she welcomed Irish guests with a smile on her face. She really wanted to introduce the Irish to our gastronomic culture. She succeeded.

"How are you feeling now?" I ask Yulia.

"I'm happy. Despite all the difficulties, I can still do what I really love. And I am surrounded by very good people. So yes, I'm happy."

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O’Connor’s college concert a resounding successAccordion maestro Liam O’Connor does not do things by halves.

He proved it again last Thursday night when he hosted his ninth ‘Liam O’Connor Concert with St Brendan’s College Students’ in the school’s chapel. While the concert was always about […]

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He proved it again last Thursday night when he hosted his ninth ‘Liam O’Connor Concert with St Brendan’s College Students’ in the school’s chapel.

While the concert was always about showcasing the students’ talents as musicians and singers, the guest list would not have looked out of place on Ryan Tubridy’s Late Late Show on RTÉ One.

The GAA world was represented by former Kilkenny hurling manager Brian Cody, Kerry stars and past students of St Brendan’s Dara Moynihan, David Clifford and Gavin White.

Of course, legendary RTÉ sports commentator Marty Morrissey was on hand to get the best responses out of the sporting stars.

O’Connor and his musical children Saoirse, Oisín, and Cillian who is a student of the college, weren’t even the top musical bill on the night.

That honour went to Paddy Casey.

“Casey royally entertained one and all, and our surprise guest, the RTÉ broadcaster Marty Morrissey, enthralled us with his views on Kerry footballers Dara Moynihan, Gavin White and David Clifford,” Liam told the Killarney Advertiser.

“A night of unbelievable synergies was completed with an abundance of local talent. It was a truly unique night of star talent that will live on in the memories of everyone who was there.”

Liam also paid special tribute to the college Principal Seán Coffey and music teachers Mish O’Donoghue and Niamh O’Connell for their colossal support.

“The students themselves were indeed amazing, with the energy they brought to their singing, dancing and playing music. Their commitment to the event was such that they generously gave up their lunch hours to help make it all work,” he added.

The success of the concert rounded off a busy year for the international-renowned accordion champion that included a high-energy appearance at Electric Picnic and an equally lauded performance with the Celtic Tenors at the rugby clash between Munster and world champions South Africa at Páirc Uí Chaoimh, Cork.

He and his son Oisín also made history in November when they became the first father and son pair to play both football and music at Croke Park on the same day.

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Marie was “lovely, unassuming lady”

By Sean Moriarty Tributes have been paid to Marie Murphy of Aughacureen, who died in tragic circumstances on November 30. Marie was a member of the well known Murphy business […]

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By Sean Moriarty

Tributes have been paid to Marie Murphy of Aughacureen, who died in tragic circumstances on November 30.

Marie was a member of the well known Murphy business family in Killarney – her brother runs KWD Recycling and she was heavily involved in the business.

She was best known for involvement in the local GAA both as a county star and a member of Fossa GAA Club.

She was a third generation Kerry footballer, her grandfather Con and father John all played football for Kerry.

She was extremely proud of her niece Abbie, her brother Seán’s daughter, when she became the fourth generation Murphy to play for Kerry.

Marie played for Kerry in 1976 and re-joined Fossa GAA Club in 2010 when the ladies’ side of the club was re-formed.

She acted as a mentor for current group of ladies.

Back in 2019 when Fossa GAA Club published a book to mark its 50th anniversary she was one of the leading lights on that committee.

This year, when the club held its Night of Legends to raise funds for a new dressing room for the ladies’ club, Marie was one of the guests of honour at the INEC event and was interviewed on the stage in front of a capacity audience.

Only a few weeks ago she was one of the many club members who helped organise the Fossa Golf Classic and acted as official photographer for that event.

“The club is numb with sadness,” said Fossa GAA chairman Dermot Clifford. “She was a loyal member and very proud of the club. Our thoughts are with her family. A lovely, unassuming lady who will be sorely missed.”

Marie will be sadly missed by her brothers Con, Seamus and Seán, sisters-in-law Breda, Gennie and Anna, her nieces Shauna, Amy, Kate and Abigail, nephews John, Jack, Luke, aunties Mairead and Maura, cousins, relatives, neighbours and a large circle of friends.

She was laid to rest at Old Aghadoe Cemetery on Monday following Requiem Mass at The Prince of Peace Church, Fossa.

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