26 May 2022

OBITUARY: Sadness in Gaoth Dobhair and Gortahork following death of Willie Ferry

Funeral held in Church of Christ the King, Gortahork

OBITUARY:  Sadness in Gaoth Dobhair and Gortahork following death of Willie Ferry

The peaceful death took place in the Donegal Hospice, Letterkenny on Tuesday, October 5 of Willie Ferry, Ardsbeg, Gortahork and formerly of Meenaniller, Derrybeg.
He was a son of the late Johnny William Ferry, who was originally from Lunniagh and Biddy Charlie Ó Rabhartaigh, Meenaniller and was one of nine children born to them. He was born on August 28, 1948.
He received his education at Scoil Mhuire, Derrybeg where the late Jimmy Pheadair McBride was principal. Although Willie was a bright and intelligent scholar, he did not go to study second level education. Instead he went to work with his nextdoor neighbours, the Roarty family who had a lorry.
They were involved in harvesting hand cut turf and supplying it to homes in Leterkenny and the Lagan Valley.
Rather than returning home with an empty lorry the family would purchase turnips, hay etc. and bring it home to sell locally.
He stayed working with them for six years and most of his wages were handed over to his parents to help raise the large family.
At that time the first company, Amblers of Donegal was established on the Screabán, Derrybeg and Willie joined the workforce of this company and he worked there for three years.
He later emigrated to Scotland and remained there for a year. On his return he secured employment in the Spinning Department of the former G.T. Carpets Ltd., on the Screabán.
He remained working with this company until it ceased operating in 1981. Willie was a hard and diligent worker and he went on then to work with Mícheál Diver who was involved in construction.
Willie met his future wife, Curley Greene who hailed from Ardsbeg. There were married on February 8, 1975. After their marriage they lived at their newly constructed home located across from Willie’s former home in Meenaniller.
They lived there for a few years before selling it to the late Francie and Mary Duffy. On moving to live in Gortahork, Willie settled down well, but he had a special place in his heart for Gaoth Dobhair.
He was a very neat individual and was blessed with a good pair of hands. Down through the years he created some remarkable items.
He was a great conversationalist, was friendly and had a wonderful memory.

His remains reposed at his home on Wednesday and Thursday. His concelebrated Requiem Mass was celebrated in the Church of Christ the King, Gortahork on Friday.
The celebrant was Fr. Seán Ó Gallchóir, P.P., Gortahork and concelebrant was Fr. James Gillespie, P.P., Falcarragh.
The lessons were read by Annette and Josephine and the prayers of the faithful were read by: Jonathan, James Anthony, Noreen, Dónall, Patricia and Marie.
The offertory gifts were brought to the altar by: Tina, Bernard, Maureen and Caroline. The soloist was Frances McGeever.
After Communion a recording of Gleanntáin Ghlas Ghaoth Dobhair by Mairéad Ní Mhaonaigh was played. Willie was laid to rest afterwards in the adjacent cemetery.
Predeceased by his parents and sister, Nóra Ferry, he is survived by his wife Curley, sons Shaun, Brian. Liam and Martin, daughter Breege Marie, who is resident in New Zealand and who was unable to trave home for the funeral, grandchildren Cadhla, Aoibh, Fiadh, Sadbh and Aoife, his four brothers Charlie, Seán, Francie and Donald, his three sisters Mary, Bella and Margaret, in-laws, nieces, nephews and a large circle of family and friends, to all of whom deep sympathy is extended.

- Tommy Curran

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