Mary celebrates special birthday milestone with family and friends

Mary Carr from Glengar, Cappawhite, hit the centenary birthday jackpot recently and celebrated in style at a party in Ballykisteen Hotel & Golf Resort.

Mary Carr from Glengar, Cappawhite, hit the centenary birthday jackpot recently and celebrated in style at a party in Ballykisteen Hotel & Golf Resort.

Born on October 28, 1911, Mary celebrated by having a Mass in her house on the eve of her 100th birthday followed by a big party with friends and family the following day.

Mary, nee Sweeney, was born in Glengar and married James Carr, also from Glengar in 1940. They were married for 30 years until James passed away in 1970. They had seven children, four girls and three boys and most of them settled in and around Dublin.

Mary lives with her daughter Jenny O’Meara in Glengar whose daughter, Mary, also celebrated her 21st birthday one day after her grandmother’s on October 29.

“It was really special to have both major birthday celebrations at the same time,” said Jenny. “We were all quite overwhelmed by our mother’s centenary birthday and still can’t believe it.”

Mary has nineteen grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren with one grandchild living in Japan and one in San Francisco spanning an age group from 21 years to 42 years old.

Both of her parents lived until they were 86 years old so at 100 years of age, what is the key to Mary’s good health? Her daughter Jenny told the Nationalist that her mother would say to eat healthily, always keep busy, don’t smoke, don’t drink too much and it’s okay to have a Bailey’s now and then.

And for young couples getting married today – what advice would Mary give to them? “Stay away from the drink,” said Mary.

In 1911, the year that Mary was born, there was a Census of Ireland that was conducted on Sunday April 2, 1911. The total population of Ireland was 4,390, 219 of whom 2,192,048 were male and 2,198,171 were female.

Other major events in Irish history that year, was the first issue of the Irish Worker newspaper on May 27; the official organ of the Irish Transport and General Workers’ Union (I.T.G.W.U.) edited by James Larkin. On May 31, the RMS Titanic’s hull was launched at the Harland & Wolff shipyard in Belfast. On June 22, King George V was crowned in London while a Sinn Féin meeting at the Customs House in Dublin condemned Irish participation in the coronation ceremonies and on July 8, King George V and Queen Mary officially opened the College of Science in Merrion Square, Dublin, as part of a six-day royal visit, which became the last to the city in that century. A statue of Charles Stewart Parnell was hoisted onto its pedestal in Sackville Street, Dublin on August 9 and on August 21, the Irish Women’s Suffrage Federation was founded.

And on the world stage January 26 - Glenn Curtiss pilots the first successful hydroplane in San Diego and Richard Strauss’s opera “Die Rosenkavalier” premiered in Dresden and in December, 1911, Calbraith Rogers completed the first crossing of US by airplane that took 84 days.

Congratulations to Mary Carr on her 100th birthday celebration. Mary would like to extend a big thank you to all her family and friends that helped her celebrate this very special event.