Having arrived here in 1969, all the way from sunny Boston, Kathleen moved to Greystones, and the freshly-built Rathdown Park – or The Rabbit Hutches, as they were then jokingly referred to – in 1973. With her parents hailing from Limerick and Donegal, coming to Ireland was very much a homecoming for the young Ms Kelleher – and she quickly made herself at home here.
Taking her parents’ advice that you should always get involved, Kathleen did just that when she arrived here, serving as student government officers in secondary school and university, becoming a qualified second-level teacher before becoming a social worker. Later, after getting married and starting a family here in Greystones, Kathleen got involved with Meals On Wheels. And then the Rathdown Park Residents Association, Toastmasters International, and the Board of Management and Parents Association at the school her four children attended.
And that was just for starters. Kathleen also became Church Reader in Blacklion, Eucharistic Minister and member of the Irish Choir in The Holy Rosary, getting involved in the Dublin Diocesan Women’s Forum and helping start the Holy Rosary Church Bulletin. Oh, and there was Siamsa Fheile Padraig, the Greystones Summer Project, Greystones Youth Club, Greystones Community Action on Drugs, Greystones Cancer Support, the very first Mothers, Babies & Toddlers group in Greystones, and helping raise funds for Playground Parents – which eventually got that South Beach playground off the, eh, ground.
And this was all whilst learning to play the tin whistle with Comhaltas Ceoltoiri Eireann. Naturally enough.
All that huffing and puffing didn’t manage to take the wind out of Kathleen’s sails though – she also served as a town councillor here from 1999 to 2014, and was also chairman of the Greystones Town Council Community Affairs Committee, overseeing the likes of our Paddy’s Day parade and the switching on of the Christmas lights.
Somewhere, in the midst of all that, Kathleen found the time to accept an award for Civic Person Of The Year 1987.
As you can see, we’re dealing with a woman who likes to keep busy – and who likes to keep Greystones moving ever onwards and upwards. As anyone who has been checking out Kathleen’s weekly About Greystones show on Garden County Radio every Sunday at 10am.