Commemorative Monument for Tommy Kavanagh

On Sunday in Ballingarry, Co. Tipperary a commemorative headstone was erected to honour the memory of life-long Tipperary Republican Tommy Kavanagh. The event was organised by the Sinn Féin cumann in The Commons which now bears his name, and by the South Tipperary Republican Commemoration Committee.

Commemorative Monument for Tommy Kavanagh

John Webster, brother of Tommy Kavanagh, and curator of the The Famine War House 1848 with niece of Tommy Kavanagh at the newly-unveiled monument.

Despite mildly inclement weather, the event in that attractively quiet Tipperary village was well-attended. The Carrick-on-Suir Republican Flute band led a short procession from the top of village to the graveyard where Tommy Kavanagh is buried. The rousing music set the tone of the ceremony and drew the attention and admiration of the residents as they emerged from 10:30 mass.

After the unveiling, wreaths were laid by the organisers, including by Eamonn Cleere, chair of the local Sinn Féin cumann in The Commons that is named after Tommy.

Professor Willie Nolan then spoke of the life and character of Tommy, and in praise of his commitment to his country and community. He was an active fund-raiser for community causes, including for such facilities as the local handball alley.

He outlined the many deeds by Tommy in favour of his community, including the preservation of it’s history and participation in the preservation of The 1848 Famine War House.

Professor Nolan’s oration was heard by Republicans who travelled from all over Tipperary, and from other counties, including Kilkenny, and by his relatives.

The headstone was erected with funds collected by his comrades and friends, and is but the smallest token of the great affection and respect in which they held Tommy.

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