There are a lot of things that can be said about living in a small town. Many of these are negative.
It cannot be easy living in your neighbours pockets or knowing everyone’s life story or in the case of many Fethard people, being related to more than half of your parish. But for every negative, there’s a positive and there are undoubtedly many positives about Fethard that deserve to be celebrated.
This weekend, the people of Fethard came out in their hundreds to support one man, my father Teddy Morrissey. A benefit night was organised in the Clonmel Park Hotel by some of Teddy’s best friends. The night was extremely successful and the atmosphere was unlike anything I have ever experienced before. The sense of community on the night was next to none as Teddy’s friends and family members from near and far participated in waxing and head shaving challenges. Many bidders fought for great prizes, kindly donated by local businesses as local auctioneer John Stokes took bids. Music by local DJ Kumar Mehta had the whole ballroom dancing as Teddy himself gave an outstanding ACDC impersonation. Many donated money on the night and hundreds of raffle tickets were sold which saw many people take home great prizes.
Teddy said a few words on the night which inspired the entire crowd and showed the strong, enthusiastic spirit for which he is known.
For me, the night was a heart-warming reminder that small communities have the power to do amazingly big things when they pull together and I have never been so unbelievably proud to call myself a Fethard native. On behalf of myself and my family, I would like to extend a thank you to every single person that attended the event; those from near and afar; those that went home bald and those who held their tears as they were waxed; to everyone who donated, bought raffle tickets and bid on great prizes and to all of the local businesses who donated items and to the Clonmel Park Hotel for having us.
Of course there are those that must be thanked on a larger scale for their exceptional efforts. A massive thank you to Kumar Mehta for providing great music that had the entire town playing air guitar. To John Stokes who upped the ante at the auction and got great prizes sold. To Laurence Kenny for photography and of course, an exceptional thank you to the men that organised the entire event, Declan Lonergan, Johnny Lawlor, Niall Walsh, Keith Culligan and Shane Kenny or as they were known on the night, ‘Teddy’s Crew’.
But ultimately the biggest thanks goes to Teddy himself whose big heart and unconditional friendship to all brought the entire community together for one big celebration. It was once written that the value of a person’s life is directly related to the number of people they positively affect. Seeing the amount of support that Teddy has received in the last few weeks has proven that he is a living legend, a man that above all else, believes in the importance of friendship and family.
To the people of Fethard, your support has been amazing. As a family, we are touched by the efforts of every single last person that’s offered a hand or some kind words at this time. May you always be loved and welcomed home by a community bounded by camaraderie and may you never forget the days that you spent in a small walled town in Tipperary. Thank You!
— Becky Fogarty