The death took place on February 20, 2018 of John O’Sullivan, Lisalohorig, Skibbereen.

In his 97th year, John was one of the oldest people in Skibbereen parish. He died full of years and contentment having lived a long and fulfilled life. Up to just a few weeks before his death John was still very active and fully engaged in the lives of his family, neighbours and friends.

John farmed at Lisalohorig all his life, as did his father before him, and his father before that. He had a deeply ingrained and inherent attachment to the land, faming and nature. John was a good farmer, with a great respect for the ground he nurtured and the produce of his labour.

John O’Sullivan was born in 1921, he was one of four children. His father was Paddy and his mother was Hannah Cadogan from Sherkin island. John attended Lisalohorig National School, once a very well attended school but which has been closed now for some fifty years or so.

John O'Sullivan 4 PH3_3907
John O’Sullivan, pictured at Lisalohorig Bridge, near his home, in 2017.

John was a very well read man, had many interests including a great grá for history. He attended many Skibbereen & District Historical Society talks over the years. He had a great depth of knowledge and was very generous in sharing it with many people who called to him seeking information. Unfortunately, we didn’t record enough of John’s great store of knowledge and now much of it has passed to the next world with him.

One of his great interests was ploughing. John attended the National Ploughing Championships every year for over 60 years and travelled to Denmark for the World Ploughing Championships to celebrate his 80th birthday.

Sport, and particularly bowling, was another pastime of his, and he always kept a close eye on current affairs and politics – world, national and local. He was also a great man for the cards, and in latter years he enjoyed his visits to Skibbereen Day Care Centre. John enjoyed company and he was very good company himself.

John O’Sullivan was truly one of nature’s gentlemen. He had that old-world charm and gentle manner of a bygone era.

Requiem Mass for John O’Sullivan was celebrated by Fr. Chris O’Donovan at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Skibbereen, the same church in which he was baptised over 96 years before. The theme for the Mass was ‘Harvest’ which was so appropriate and members of the O’Sullivan family took part in different parts of the ceremony, including the singing of the introductory hymn and playing some traditional Irish music to finish.

John was predeceased by his wife Eileen, née McCarthy, who was also from Lisalohorig. John and Eileen had six children and sixteen grandchildren. John closely followed the lives of each of his grandchildren and took great pride in their achievements. He was gifted with his hands, and he made many models of farm implements and tools from olden times to help explain to his grandchildren how farming was carried out when John himself was a boy.

John O’Sullivan is survived by his children Ann (O’Callaghan), Pat, Niall, Peggy (Collins), Carmel (Austin) and Trish (McCarthy), daughters-in-law Paula and Helena, sons-in-law Michael, Jerry and Dermot, sixteen grandchildren, nephews, nieces, neighbours and a large circle of friends.

John O’Sullivan, Lisalohorig, one of nature’s gentlemen