*Photograph: Joe Buckley

COMMUNITY leaders in Shannon and surrounding parishes were honoured during the St Patrick’s Day parade.

Organised by Niamh O’Callaghan, this year’s special guests honoured were a selection of different individuals rather than one grand marshal. Ethan Cassley was master of ceremonies for the parade.

Those honoured included Alan Cunningham, Richard Park, Sr Jo Cantwell, Derek Clune, Cllr Pat McMahon (FF), Shannon Fire and Rescue plus the deceased Rory Lynch and Dylan Coady Coleman.

A fifty year involvement with Shannon Scouts saw Richard Park acknowledged, Alan Cunningham’s contribution as a member of staff in St Caimin’s Community School for over thirty seven years as a teacher and later principal was lauded. A former Clare hurler, he is currently part of the Limerick senior hurling management, he has been coach of the Clare senior hurlers on two occasions and has been actively involved with the Wolfe Tones club.

Cllr McMahon ahead of his pending retirement from politics following 49 years on Clare County Council received a presentation from his colleague, Cllr Donna McGettigan (SF). The Newmarket-on-Fergus native currently serves as Chair of the Economic Development Strategic Policy Committee (SPC) on the local authority.

Sr Jo made her final profession as a Sister of Mercy over 50 years ago. She was transferred from Nenagh to Shannon in 1975 when she was appointed to the teaching staff of St. Patrick’s Comprehensive school. On retirement from teaching in 1994, she became Parish Sister and a member of the Shannon Parish team. She is widely known throughout Shannon for her involvement in different forms of Ministry in the Parish. She visits every home in the Parish preparing for Baptism, co-ordinates bereavement support, and Rainbows programme for children whose parents have separated, divorced or died. She is a member of the Board of Management of St. Senan’s NS.

One of Shannon’s most prominent volunteers, Derek Clune also received a presentation. The Ruan man is involved with Shannon Tidy Towns and the Shannon Community Partnership plus serving as Chairman of the Cronan Residents Association.

Shannon Fire and Rescue’s service to the town of Shannon saw them receive a momento.

Selfless acts of generosity to the town from the late Rory Lynch were recalled. His legacy is a successful haulage business employing countless people. He gave so much to the town especially to Drumgeely by way of Lynch Park. There is much he has done, quietly and without acknowledgement.

A photograph remembering the late Dylan Coady Coleman adorned the stage. The ten year old died in a tragic road accident last month and inspired many with his desire to be an organ donor at such a young age.

All photographs by Joe Buckley

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If you’re here, you care about County Clare. So do we. Did you rely on us for Covid-19 updates, follow our election coverage, or visit The Clare Echo every week for breaking news and sport? The Clare Echo invests in local journalism and we want to safeguard its future in our county. By becoming a subscriber you are supporting what we do, will receive access to all our premium articles and a better experience, while helping us improve our offering to you. Subscribe to clareecho.ie and get the first six months for just €3 a month (less than 75c per week), and thereafter €8 per month. Cancel anytime, limited time offer. T&Cs Apply. www.clareecho.ie.

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