Many tributes have been paid to the great community activist, Mrs. Nóra Gallagher, Lower Murroe, Dunfanaghy who passed away last week.
Aged 63 years, she died at the Donegal Hospice, Letterkenny on Monday 26th September after a short illness. Originally from Carrickataskin, Derrybeg she moved to live in Dunfanaghy on her marriage to John Gallagher.
In September 2013, she retired from the FÁS Centre on the Ghaoth Dobhair Business Park after spending a total of 32 years working there. She started work at the centre, which was known then as AnCo, in 1981. Nóra held different positions during her time at the centre. She initially worked in the canteen and later she was appointed purchasing officer and later she became receptionist.
Her death evoked widespread regret in both Dunfanaghy and Gaoth Dobhair, where she was widely known and highly respected. She had immersed herself in community work and was a woman of inexhaustible energy. She was a woman of great warmth, charm and kindness.
A feeling of grief
Speaking at her funeral mass in the Holy Cross Church, Dunfanaghy Fr. Martin Doohan, P.P., said a feeling of darkness of grief had fallen over the area with Nóra’s death. There was sadness, pain and tears at her passing. He said she done things quietly with out any fuss and made a big impact on those who knew her.
Nóra served as Minister of the Eucharist at the Holy Cross Church. Father Martin added that she supported the church in any way she could: She came to it to pray, to clean it and to fund-raise for it.
An exemplary community activist
Nóra Bheag Shéamuis was an exemplary community activist. She was involved with the community band, Care of the Aged, Simon Community, Active Age, and was on the board of management of Murroe National School and fund raised for the school.
She was involved in Ozanam Community Centre and was given the honours to welcome Mary McAleese, then the President of Ireland, when Mrs. McAleese officially opened the centre.
Nóra was a woman of charity, generosity and compassion who was also involved with the local conference of the St. Vincent de Paul.
In 2014 She was one of the main organizers of Fr. Martin’s celebrations to mark his silver jubilee in the priesthood. She was also involved in the August Fair, and each year she would prepare a hamper and sell tickets for this fund raising event.
Nóra also knitted hats and scarves to be sent to Brother Kevin for the homeless people on the streets of Dublin. She will be missed, but because of her life and the way she lived it, her memory will remain with those she touched down through the years.
Church packed to capacity
Her funeral mass was celebrated in the Holy Cross Church, Dunfanaghy. The church was packed to capacity and a large number of mourners were unable to gain entry to the church.
The main celebrant of the mass was Fr. Martin Doohan, P.P., Dunfanaghy and the concelebrants were: An Dr. Ró Oirmh. Pádraig Ó Baoighill, S.P., Gaoth Dobhair, Fr. Seán Ó Gallchóir, P.P., Gortahork and Fr. Brian Ó Fearraigh, C.C, Gaoth Dobhair. She is survived by her husband, John, three sons, Martin, Seanee and Liam; three brothers, Séamus Gallagher [England], Brian and Dominick [both living in Gaoth Dobhair]; sisters, Mairéad O’Toole [Gaoth Dobhair], Annie Ferry, [Loughanure], Alice McCafferty, [Crolly], Kathleen Gallagher [Gaoth Dobhair] and Máire, living in London; family circle, relatives and friends.
Ar Dheis Dé go raibh do anam dilis a Nóra.