The weekend of the 18th- 20th March was a weekend where communities all across Ireland took the opportunity to pause and reflect, to remember all those who have lost their lives during the pandemic, and to pay tribute to everyone who has contributed to how we have faced and are facing the challenges together.
A National Ceremony of Remembrance and Reflection took place in Dublin in addition to events taking place in every County in Ireland. Tipperary County Council held a local Ceremony of Reflection and Remembrance which was led by Leas-Cathaoirleach of Tipperary County Council, Cllr. Siobhan Ambrose. This took place in Holycross Town Park on Sunday 20th March with representatives of front-line workers across a range of organisations. These included the HSE, An Garda Síochána, Tipperary Civil Defence, Tipperary Fire and Rescue and Tipperary Search and Rescue and sectors and families who had lost loved ones during this time.
With Blessings by His Excellency, Archbishop O’Reilly and the Revered James Mulhall, an Oak Tree was planted by the Leas-Cathaoirleach with wreaths laid by front-line workers in memory of all those who passed away in Tipperary during this period.
A magnificent stone memorial created by Sculptor Philip Quinn from Holycross was unveiled, marking a permanent memorial site and tree planted in memory.
The ceremonies faciliated individual and collective remembrance and commemoration of all those who died and who have been bereaved, whilst acknowledging the important role played by front line workers over the past two years. Families were invited through an open invitation to submit the names of loved ones they would like remembered during the Tipperary ceremony.
Over 100 names were read aloud by front-line workers, honouring their memory. Cllr Siobhan Ambrose paid tribute to those who died “we gather together to remember our loved ones, the lives they lived, the joy they brought to our lives and the contributions they made to society” and acknowledged the key role played by front-line workers “We would like to acknowledge our frontline workers, and also our friends, neighbours, family members, who stepped up to lend a hand in their communities while we navigated through this unprecedented crisis. We are forever grateful.”
The Leas-Cathaoirleach encouraged us to look to the future with hope as the very moving ceremony concluded “Today is a day of reflection and as we emerge from this most extraordinary period in our history, we do so with hope in our hearts.“
Damien Dullaghan, Head of Libraries and Culture stated;
“The past two years has seen both great sadness but also great unity. As a society, we are still feeling the repercussions of the pandemic now. Today was an important day as it allows us to acknowledge what we have been through as a Country and at a local level as a County. It also offered us an opportunity to show our gratitude to the frontline workers who contributed so much throughout the pandemic”.
This event was recorded and can be viewed on the Tipperary County Council Library YouTube Channel or at this link: