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Mary Ann marks her 103rd birthday in style

103 year old Mary Maxwell celebrating her birthday with her son Billy at a party in the Cottage Hospital

103 year old Mary Maxwell celebrating her birthday with her son Billy at a party in the Cottage Hospital

A special celebration took place in Clonmel, last week, for a glamorous great-granny as she marked her 103rd birthday!

Birthday girl Mary Ann Maxwell celebrated with family and friends at the Cottage Nursing Home.

Son Billy, granddaughter Fiona and her great grandchildren joined with friends and carers for the very special occasion on Sunday, April 6.

There was a lovely birthday cake, flowers and cards, and the party atmosphere was added to with the music of local favourite Stefan Grace. Mary had a wonderful day.

Born Mary Ann Leo, to a family in the King Street Flats in 1911, Mary led an active and varied life that took her far from her home town for many years, before her return to Clonmel.

Mary Ann was born on April 2, 1911, the eldest of the five children of Billy and Annie Leo, who lived at 22 The Flats. She grew up with three brothers, Jackie, Christy and Billy and a sister Addie.

In 1935, Mary Ann married Dubliner Patrick Maxwell and the couple moved to live in the city. There they had a family of three children – Elizabeth (Betty Dunphy), William (Billy) and Patrick (Paddy). They moved to England after the war, in 1945, where they lived in Keston, Kent, for 62 years.

Mary Ann worked at several jobs during those 62 years and what must be one of the secrets to her long and healthy life – she retired at the ‘young’ age of 84!

Her youngest son, Patrick, died at the age of 21, 50 years ago in 1961. Mary Ann lost her husband in 1980, 31 years ago. Daughter Betty, who was married and lived in Clonmel, passed away in 2005.

Mary Ann and her son Billy moved back to Ireland in April 2010. She moved in to the Cottage Nursing Home, in Irishtown, just before her 100th birthday.

 

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