Nassau County, NY, remembers Easter Rising

On Easter Monday 2012, more than 100 people attended the annual Easter Uprising memorial service in Mineola, NY. At a location behind the courthouse stands the now completed Irish Easter Rising Memorial, a testament to those who gave their lives for Ireland’s freedom. Sponsored by the Irish Monument Committee each Easter Monday, the one-hour ceremony allows all those present to remember the martyrs of 1916.

The committee is comprised of various Irish organizations including the Nassau County Board of the Ancient order of Hibernians, the Nassau Police Emerald Society, the Irish American Society of Nassau, Suffolk and Queens, Irish Northern Aid, The Friendly Sons of St. Patrick, the Irish Americans in Government, the Brehon Law Society of Nassau County, and the Irish Studies Program of Hofstra University.

The ceremony, which was headed this year by the Police Emerald Society, included remarks from Deputy Consul General of Ireland Peter Ryan and Sinn Fein politician and Seanad Erirann Senator Kathryn Reilly about the peace process in Ireland.

Also in the ceremony the Proclamation of 1916 was read along with readings of Sean O’Casey’s eulogy and “The Rose Tree” by William Butler Yeats. The memorial concluded with a laying of a wreath at the monument.

“First dedicated in 1979, the monument has been a continuing work in  progress requiring renovation,” said master of ceremonies Donal Mahoney. “I have been pleased and proud to be part of the process of the monument as it has gone through various stages of renovation and refurbishment.”

Mahoney notes the Monument Committee has brought together a host Irish organizations on Long Island and has drawn together the Irish American community “with the government of Ireland which has been absolute.”

The monument has been located behind the Nassau County Court House since 1979, albeit unfinished. In 1993 it was rededicated and renovated.  Recently, Irish groups throughout Long Island decided to complete and renovate the project. Three years ago the top was put on the monument, a harp with 32 strings representing the 32 counties and the names of 15 who died on the base. Flowers, lights and a walkway were added two years ago and this year, to finish it off, benches were installed and the plaques were placed back onto the memorial.

The Monument Committee also started a customized brick program to be placed in the paving stones around the monument for all the sponsors of the project.

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Annual Northern Ireland Christmas Appeal Fundraiser

Cortland Manor, NY – September 28, 2011 – The New York State Freedom for All Ireland Committee of the Ancient Order of Hibernians has announced its annual Northern Ireland Christmas Appeal Fundraiser to be held on October 13, 2011, at Harbour Lights Restaurant located on Pier 17 of the South Street Seaport.

“The good will and outreach for the Christmas Appeal each year brings direct results to the people of the North,” said NY State FFAI Chairman Dan Dennehy, “ and helps Americans have a better understanding of the needs of the people of Northern Ireland.”

Admission is included in a minimum donation of $50 to the annual appeal, and includes music and food. There will also be a cash bar.

There will be a number of speakers on the agenda who will address the struggle for a United Ireland, including

  • Clara O’Reilly (Relatives For Justice) 2011 AOH Sean McBride Humanitarian Award Winner
  • Matt Morrison (Thar Saile)
  • Steve McCabe & General James Cullen (Brehon Law Society)
  • Sean Pender (AOH National FFAI Chair & NJ State President)

All monies donated that night will go to the AOH’s annual Christmas Appeal, which has raised and distributed over $570,000 in direct aid to the people of Northern Ireland.

Last year, the AOH was able to make donations to 21 organizations throughout Northern Ireland and the United States, including:

  • Bloody Sunday Families, Derry
  • Cairdre, Strabane
  • Holy Cross, Ardoyne, Belfast
  • Justice for the Forgotten, Dublin & Monaghan
  • Mary’s Gift USA—for Irish speaking schools in the North
  • Omagh Basketball Club & Omagh Choir
  • Pat Finucane Center, Derry & Newry
  • Relatives for Justice, Belfast & Dungannon
  • Thar Saile, USA

For more information about the event please contact NY State FFAI Chairman Dan Dennehy at (914) 588-2710 or by email at ffai@nyaoh.com.

About the Northern Ireland Christmas Appeal:  Since 2001, the AOH’s Christmas Appeal has raised and distributed over $570K of direct aid to make positive change in the lives of many people in Ireland. Last year the Christmas Appeal was able to make donations to 21 organizations throughout the North of Ireland & USA.

 About the Ancient Order of Hibernians: Founded in 1836, the Ancient Order of Hibernians is the largest Irish Catholic organization in the United States, with almost 35,000 members nationwide and almost 10,000 in New York State. Membership is open at all men age 16 and over, who are of Irish birth or ancestry, and are practicing Catholics. For more information, please visit their website at www.nyaoh.com.com or contact Nassau County Organizer Tom Lambert at organizer@nyaoh.com.

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