There was great sadness throughout the county following news of the sudden and unexpected passing of former Fine Gael councillor Kitty Duignan. Known far and wide, Kitty Duignan was a much-loved lady and a greatly respected community figure.
Kitty Duignan (nee Murray) passed away peacefully at her residence at Rathallen, Boyle on Friday, 7th of December. She was predeceased by her husband Charlie (also a county councillor) and by their three children – James, Charles and Mary (Mulvey).
A native of Frenchpark, Kitty Duignan entered politics when she was co-opted on to Roscommon County Council in 1990, after the death of her husband Charlie, then a Fine Gael councillor (first elected in 1967). She was re-elected in the local elections of 1991 and 1999, losing the seat in 2004.
Paying tribute, Cllr. Liam Callaghan described Kitty Duignan as “an inspiration” and one of the area’s most highly regarded and best-loved characters.
He said: “Kitty had a large circle of loyal friends and always left an impression on whoever she met. She was a very generous person both with her time and advice. There was always a warm welcome in her home in Rathallen. Time never seemed to matter when you were in Kitty’s company”.
Cllr. Callaghan described the former councillor as a political genius, an “old-style” practitioner who knew not only individual families but “generations of families”.
She was, he noted, very proud of the fact that she and her late husband Charlie both served as Chairperson of Roscommon Co. Council.
Cllr. Callaghan said: “Kitty was a great community person and had a great love for the area and the people she represented. She had great faith and is now reunited with her beloved family”.
Senator Frank Feighan, expressing his sadness at the news, said that he knew Kitty Duignan for more than thirty years.
“I had the great honour of being elected alongside her in 1999 to Roscommon County Council in the Boyle electoral area. Kitty was an extremely hard-working councillor. She was compassionate and very well liked by all who knew her and by colleagues from all parties. Kitty will be sadly missed”.
Extending her sympathy to Kitty Duignan’s family and friends, Senator Maura Hopkins said that Kitty was always keen to encourage young people to have an interest in current affairs.
“Kitty was a very genuine person whose sole focus was to get on with her work and help others. May she rest in peace”.
Large crowds attended the funeral services. Reposal at Brady’s Funeral Home, Elphin on Sunday was followed by Removal to St. Attracta’s Church, Ballinameen. Funeral Mass on Monday last was followed by private cremation.
The late Kitty Duignan is mourned by her son-in-law Paul, grandsons Cathal and James, sister Mary (Pex), brother Eddie, sister-in-law Bernie, further relatives and a large circle of friends. May she rest in peace.