The parents of Mark Lennon, who died tragically in a speedboat crash in New York on the Hudson River, are known as tremendous Irish community activists and dedicated workers.
The 30-year-old Lennon, son of Irish-born parents, was killed on the Hudson River near the Tappan Zee bridge on Friday night, along with bride-to-be Lindsey Stewart, just two weeks before she was due to marry his best friend Brian Bond.
Kevin Lennon and wife Dympna left Longford in 1978 to come to America and established a life here in Pearl River, north of New York City where there is a large Irish community.
Kevin, a carpenter by trade, was described as “an unsung hero” by friends and neighbors who pointed to countless hours of dedication he spent working with the local Rockland GAA club especially helping out with underage teams.
“He’s the kind of guy who would mark the pitch, do all the unglamorous things and never miss a meeting said a friend. He’d work with the kids to teach them Gaelic games.”
“He came out before many of us and was a bridge to the older generation who came out in the 60s.” added a friend.
Every St. Patrick’s Day parade in Pearl River Kevin and Dympna host Longford exiles and those out from Ireland in their home.
“It is always a wonderful occasion the Lennons spare nothing to ensure everyone had a great Irish welcome.”
Sons Mark and Raymond were also well known in the community as is Kevin’s brother Noel.
Kevin is from Killoe and Dympna from Ballinalee in Longford.
The neighbor said there are still many unanswered questions about the crash and whether the barges were correctly lit.
“I know the young man driving is accused of being drunk but an awful lot of people have said that drunk or sober it is very difficult to see those barges at night,” said the neighbor.
Secrets of ancient Irish charms and spells