President attends celebration of Finola’s life


President Michael D. Higgins was amongst the mourners who attended a Funeral Mass for the late Finola McCrann in Roscommon town on Tuesday.

  Described by Fr. John Cullen as a woman who was “inextricably linked with Roscommon,” Finola McCrann was a community figure of great renown during her long life.

  Ms. McCrann, of Castle Street, Roscommon and formerly of The Square, died peacefully at Portiuncula Hospital on Saturday last. She donated her body to Medical Science. Tuesday’s well-attended Mass in the Sacred Heart Church, Roscommon was described as a celebration of Finola’s life.  During the Mass, Fr. Cullen alluded to Finola’s involvement in the HAC, her huge commitment to her community and her impassioned dedication to Civil Rights. She was involved in the local Community Council, Tops of the Town, Roscommon Musical Society, Tourist Office and many other activities.

For many years she ran the Emerald Café, which, Fr. Cullen noted, “was a magnet of welcome inclusiveness for all shades of opinion.”

  In the 1970’s, Finola sat extramural classes in various subjects and topics in Galway. Current President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins was her lecturer and became a close friend.

  Fr. Cullen told the congregation: “Finola and Roscommon were inextricably linked. Her connection with the place and the people was absolute. This is best expressed in her many letters to the local papers on a range of issues where her words were never minced, salted, peppered or varnished: Finola called a spade a spade. Finola’s loyalty to Roscommon was part of her identity. It shaped her outlook.

  “Finola combined so many interests: opera, books, piano, music, love of animals, the Donkey Sanctuary, National Council for the Blind and travel. She travelled in Europe, and the United States of America, she enjoyed socialising and conversation and was terrific company.”

  Finola McCrann is mourned by her nieces, nephews, cousins, extended family, neighbours and friends.