Carlow County - Ireland Genealogical Projects (IGP TM)

Johnny Lacey (1926-2003)


The late Johnny Lacey

Carlow mourned another one of its loyal characters when Johnny Lacey of 157 JKL Avenue, Carlow passed away on Tuesday, July 22, at the age of 77.

Johnny died in ST. Luke’s Hospital, Kilkenny, following a short illness.

Johnny, affectionately know as ’Jack’ by his family, moved the short distance from Pollerton Road to JKL Avenue when he married Teresa Walker. Teresa died 16 years ago and his son, Thomas, also predeceased Johnny.

Johnny Lacey began work as a young boy in the Barrow Mills, Graiguecullen following in his father’s footsteps. He worked in the Barrow Mills for 44 years and was forced into retirement when the mill closed. During his time in the Barrow Mills, Johnny was a very active trade union representative progressing from shop steward to chairman of the local ITGWU branch, attending many seminars in Dublin on behalf of his fellow workers.

A dedicated member of the Workman’s Club, Brown Street, Johnny was a member of the Local Defence Force in Carlow (LDF) for a number of years.

Johnny was well known in the sporting life of Carlow. He played both hurling and football with the CBS school and captained the school hurling team to win a tournament final. he later played football with The Shamrocks and hurled with Carlow Town Hurling Club.

Like many of his own age group, he cycled many times to see Carlow play football in Geraldines Park, Athy. In his younger days Johnny spent a lot of time with his granny and as a result he maintained a great love for Graiguecullen and for Laois. He was genuinely thrilled to live to see Laois win their first Leinster Football title in 57 years.

In latter years his attention focused on Eire Og and he also followed them throughout the successful 1990s. Johnny’s sporting interests extended beyond the GAA and included both horse racing and greyhound racing. He was the proud owner and trainer of his own greyhounds in his time - some of the names that come to mind are Change Bill, Tara Boo and Laura’s Aim.

Throughout his life Johnny enjoyed a flutter on the horses and despite failing eyesight in his illness, he liked to have a bet - in which he was assisted by his brother, Walter ’Bunty’ Lacey.

He was also a lover of the Irish Language and proudly wore the silver Fainne. He loved to play music, particularly the accordion. He was never one to miss the old sing-song and his many friends that he had throughout his life will fondly remember Johnny singing his version of ’Feeding The Duck in the Pond’.

Johnny was a man who enjoyed a sociable drink, his favourite ’locals’ being Jimmy King’s and Lawlor’s "The Plough".

Fr Conor O’Reilly, CC Askea-Bennekerry, received the remains in the Cathedral on July 23. Music at the removal was provided by his nieces Claire Cashin while nephew Bernard Hennessy, sang.

Fr Tom Little, PP Askea-Bennekerry, celebrated the Funeral Mass. Fr Gerry Cushen, CC Carlow joined him to concelebrate. Members of the Garda Band played at the Funeral Mass and were supported by the Graiguecullen Men’s Choir.

Johnny was interred in St. Mary’s Cemetery, along with his wife Teresa and son Thomas.

He is survived by his sons Peter, Francis, Gerard and Michael and his daughter Geraldine, son-in-law and daughters-in-law, grandchildren and great grandchildren, brothers Walter, Luke, Mick, who came from the USA for the funeral, and Tony, sisters Maudie and Peggy (Hennessy), nephews, nieces, brothers and sisters-in-law, neighbours and friends.

Johnny Lacey was a devoted husband, father and grandfather.

May he rest in peace.

August 2003


Source: (The Nationalist. Date December 1983 from the Nolan Newspaper cuttings provided by Mr. M Purcell.)

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