remembering joe kilkenny

Joe Kilkenny Remembered


Joe was a truly great character. I knew him through Antoinette Lawlor, his beloved late wife. I could never fathom Joe. He was deeply religious in a way but said he did not believe in Mass or God or at least he said we can’t understand these things. Yet he went to Mass and Communion. A complex soul. Antoinette was a real total saint so I am sure she brought him home safely to heaven. Joe always insisted that heaven was now. He is right now.

Joe was an architect and very proud of the work he had done. He was an extremely private man and managed to stay out of a nursing home even though his home situation was dire. He had fallen several times but stayed at home with help of carers even though he was in bits really due to broken bones. The red wine was his main pain killer. He had a lot of pain. Arthritis.

Many a glass we shared over many a lunch.

There was a lovely silence about his house and grounds. A certain deep holiness. He was austere in a way and held high standards. I held him in reverence. As I held Antoinette’s father, Tony, also. I am sorry i did not visit him more. He was always welcoming yet always distant. His was a very private universe. I think he liked me. I liked him. He was well matched to Antoinette. He always spoke very lovingly of her. I liked his honesty which was searing. He did not suffer fools but was a very kind man. Full of dignity and integrity.

He liked sailing and knew my Uncle Sean. When Antoinette died, Joe became friendly with Elva, a lovely neighbour. I knew him through Joe Kelly also and Brenda Kennedy.