THE WEST Limerick poet and historian Margaret Doody-Scully, who died suddenly last weekend, was a “leading light” who will be sorely missed by the local community.
Ms Doody-Scully, who lived at Farrihy, Broadford, died last Sunday at the Mid Western Regional Hospital. A native of Feohanagh and previously of Kilfinny, she was an active member of the Castlemahon History Society for a number of years, and also penned two books of her own.
Pat Normoyle, a member of the Castlemahon History Society, said that while Ms Doody-Scully had recently been battling illness, her death was unexpected. “It was a big shock, absolutely. We’d all hoped that she’d turned a corner, so this was terrible to find out. She’ll be missed, certainly. She was definitely one of the leading lights that kept the journal going.”
Ms Doody-Scully was actively involved in the annual publication of the Feohanagh-Castlemahon parish journal, and took great pride in the fact that it is the longest consecutively published journal in the county.
Last October she published her second book, Inside Looking Out, which was a collection of her poetry on the folklore, history and natural beauty of West Limerick. The 200-page book contained a total of 165 poems about places such as Dromcollogher, Broadford, Feohanagh, Killeedy, Newcastle West and Knockfierna.
In 2005 she published her first book, a history of the church in Feohanagh-Castlemahon parish titled From the Bog to the Bishop. She also contributed material on the local parish for the Limerick Diocesan Heritage project.
In her younger days she was an accomplished camogie player and long distance runner – in the late 1960s she represented Ireland in senior ladies cross-country.
Mr Normoyle said that Ms Doody-Scully was a passionate and enthusiastic writer and researcher.
“She was a fantastic worker, very enthusiastic. If you ever asked Margaret to look into something or research something, she’d do it. She’ll be a very big loss.”