Great sadness at passing of well-known Ballyshannon farmer

Sue Doherty

Reporter:

Sue Doherty

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sue.doherty@donegaldemocrat.com

Great sadness at passing of well-known Ballyshannon farmer

The late Terence 'Teddy' McShea

There was great sadness in Ballyshannon and beyond at the recent death of Terence McShea, Tullyhouse, Tully.

Teddy, as he was affectionately known to all, passed away peacefully at home, surrounded by family, on Tuesday, October 25th.

Teddy was aged 89. He and his wife Anne had celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary in September.

A native of Ballyshannon, Teddy grew up in East Port, where his parents Terence and Molly had a grocery shop, McShea's Teas. He was the youngest and last surviving of their four children.

During an economic downturn, his father went to America to work where he passed away at a young age.

Teddy started working at the age of 13 or 14, and was soon driving for the local creamery.

In the course of his work, he met Anne Kearns from Mayo, who was employed at the creamery in Ballintrillick and later Belleek. Anne was, incidentally, a dab hand at making butter. She and her colleague Gerry Clancy had even won an All-Ireland medal for their efforts!

By and by, Anne and Teddy married. When the creamery closed, they moved to Cardiff where Teddy worked in contruction with PJ Dolan from The Knather.

Dairy farm

On their return a few years later, the couple bought a farm at Tully. Not long after, Teddy was delivering milk to houses and businesses across Ballyshannon and environs. The quality of their cows' milk and Teddy's high standards were second to none, facts reflected in his being awarded a prize for the cleanest milk in the North West.

Over the years, Teddy became known as a bit of a trail blazer, being the first person on their road to own a tractor and a car. Ever helpful, he cheerfully drove older neighbours to Mass.

Although he had a stroke at the young age of 31, Teddy's energy remained undiminished. While recuperating, he read a manual on how to wire a house, learned more from a friend, and went on to do electrical work for many people in the Ballyshannon area over the years.

He was also a very active member of the IFA and a great fan of both snooker and the GAA. In addition, Teddy was an avid reader, with a very active intellect, who loved taking classes at the tech and improving his skills.

Family Man

A great family man, too, Teddy was very devoted to his and Anne's nine children - Roisin, Geraldine, Kieran, Terence, Patricia, Joseph, Eamonn, Therese and Andrew. He loved nothing more than passing his knowledge and skills on to them, in his gentle, patient way.

In his later years, Teddy took equal delight in his 17 grandchildren and one great grandchild. It was a great source of joy to him and to the family, that despite declining health in recent years, Teddy was able to attend and thoroughly enjoy two major family celebrations in recent months.

High Esteem

He will be remembered as a quiet but very good humoured man, with a great wit and always happy to help anyone. Teddy was also a man of great faith, very intelligent, hard-working and wonderfully gifted with his hands.

The high esteem in which he was held was reflected in the large numbers who attended the wake in the family home and funeral Mass in St Patrick's Church.

He will be sorely missed by his family, wide circle of friends and many in Ballyshannon and beyond. May he Rest in Peace.