Kilkelly played host to legendary musician Derek Warfield and The Young Wolfe Tones at the weekend with the rebel music band performing to commemorate an old friend with roots in the East Mayo town.
Pennsylvania’s Mattie Regan, whose father hailed from Derrycastle outside Kilkelly, was good friends with the famous singer and after Mr Regan’s passing last July it was agreed that his ashes would be scattered in Kilkelly and his friend would perform.
Mr Regan is a relative of the Duffy family who owns a pub in the town and it was in their public house that Friday night’s session took place.
Proprietor Kevin Duffy explained that Mr Regan’s father Tom and his mother were brother and sister.
“Mattie Regan’s grandparents are buried in Culmore Graveyard and the homestead is where the grotto is in Derrycastle.”
It’s understood that Mr Regan and Mr Warfield struck up a friendship at the McSwiney Club in Pennsylvania. Mr Regan, who is survived by his son Matthew, daughter Patricia and stepson Michael, was a member there and the Wolfe Tones were regular performers at the club named after Terence MacSwiney who died on hunger strike in 1920.
Mr Regan’s dedication to Irish causes was legendary and he was well-known in Pennsylvania.
“He was a proud member of the Clan Na Gael, Irish Northern Aid and the MacSwiney Club in Jenkintown where he served in various capacities as an officer and manager for decades.
“He was also a proud member of the Pioneer Fire Company of Jenkintown, the McKeown Zane VFW Post #1711 and many other social and fraternal organisations,” read his obituary.
The Duffys carried out works at the bar over the past number of weeks to host the band in a courtyard at the back of the premises. It was a ticket-only event with friends of the family and locals enjoying the historic occasion.