Death of taoiseach's mother, Eithne Kenny

[caption id="attachment_68260" align="aligncenter" width="600" caption="Taoiseach Enda Kenny carries his mother's coffin at Monday's funeral. "]


Politics was put aside after the passing last weekend of Eithne Kenny, the 93-year-old mother of Taoiseach Enda Kenny.

Mrs. Kenny's passing, on Saturday, led to the first official visit to Ireland by the British deputy prime minister being canceled. The British-Irish Council Summit, which was also due to take place, was also postponed as a mark of respect.

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Mrs. Kenny, who died in hospital on Saturday surrounded by her family, was buried on Monday in Castlebar, County Mayo.

Mrs. Kenny, who is survived by the taoiseach and his siblings John, Henry, Kieran and Marie Hastings, was actively involved in Irish political life for more than 60 years, with her late husband Henry being a Fine Gael TD for over 20 years.

Political party leaders, members of the Irish government, President Michael D. Higgins, the British Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Owen Paterson, and Julian King, the British ambassador to Ireland, were among those who attended her funeral.

Mrs. Kenny was laid to rest in Islandeady Cemetery, a lakeside setting close to Castlebar, following Requiem Mass.

British Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg cancelled his entire visit, which was to include a courtesy call to government buildings, a meeting with President Higgins, and talks with his counterpart, Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore.

The main purpose of his visit was to attend the British-Irish Council, which was established under the Good Friday Agreement to promote relationships between the eight member administrations across Ireland and Britain. He was also expected at the Conway Institute at University College Dublin and to attend a reception for business leaders. The visit will likely be rescheduled.