The tiny West Cork village of Kealkill pulled off a coup this year getting Hollywood legend Maureen O’Hara to be grand marshal of their Patrick’s Day parade.
Ninety year-old O’Hara, one-time grand marshal for the New York St. Patrick’s Day parade, generously agreed to lead the rural community’s second annual parade.
Looking as glamorous as always, the Hollywood actress was dressed in a bottle green coat and shamrock emblazoned scarf for the event.
“I bumped into Maureen O’Hara at an event in Castletownbere.” explained local farmer and Patrick’s Day parade organizer John McCarthy.
“She seemed very friendly, so I just asked her. She said ‘yes’ there and then! I couldn’t believe it. She’s very good to the area.”
Ms O’Hara lead the parade of a dozen or so floats in a classic Mercedes sports car, festively decked with balloons and flags. The excitement in the crowd was clear as the parade completed its short run from the church to the creamery, before turning back to the village’s central crossroads.
The day was chilly but the glamorous, warmly-wrapped star was clearly determined not to let that spoil the fun. The formalities over, she joined revelers in Collins’ Bar, one of the village’s two watering holes.
Having spent much of the last thirty five years in West Cork, Maureen O'Hara has frequently shown that she cares passionately about local development. Her ambitious vision for a drama school and 'legacy centre' in Glengarriff, West Cork, is rapidly becoming a reality.