On Friday 9th June I got a phone call to tell me that a certain gentleman and his
wife were visiting Emyvale and I might like to meet up. No sooner said than done
and I met them in Seamus McCluskey's house. What a surprise to see Gerald Quinn and
wife Marion there. Gerald, or Gerry to his friends, has lived the greater part of
his life in the UK and is celebrating his 80th birthday. The celebration included
a trip with a dozen of his friends to Ireland for one week. Now his friends may never
have heard of Emyvale but Gerry was not going to Ireland and not calling to see old
friends so the entire party had to come to Emyvale for the night. After that they
were going on to Derry and then along the North Coast and ending up for a few days
in Belfast before returning to England. A couple of rounds of golf were penciled
in to the programme.
With Seamus we traversed years and succeeded in going through the '50's and '60's
remembering the incidents, the happy days, the cinema in the parochial, the sports
in the field, the dances in Benny's, the FCA, the characters of the time and the
marching Bands. Gerry enquired about people he knew, some of whom have now passed
on to their eternal reward, and each person mentioned brought back to memory a story
or a funny occasion. It was sad to hear from him that he is the sole remaining member
of the Quinn family, but some of you will remember Aiden, Brian, Maura and Noeleen.
Gerry's father was a Garda Sergeant in Emyvale and his mother was a teacher in Aughnacloy.
Gerry was a volunteer projectionist in the Emyvale Cinema in the Old Parochial Hall
and when he went to England his knowledge of projectors and films stood him in good
stead and he got employed as a projectionist and promotion soon followed. His career
continued in Films, Theatre lighting, and sound.
It was a great couple of hours of reminiscing and recall and Seamus and I were delighted
that he called and we both enjoyed our time with him. We hope he had a good holiday
and a safe return home.