The Moloney family reunion in Loughrea, Co. Galway
By Irish Echo Staff
Ireland, as we all know, is a place from where people depart.
But it’s also a place that lures them back, sometimes years, sometimes even generations later.
Family reunions in Ireland have become popular in recent years.
Often they are comprised of returning “Yanks” and their long lost relatives on the island.
Some reunions attracts members of the same extended family from the four corners of the globe
Often, people with the same family roots end up meeting for the first time.
One family that mustered in big numbers and from far and wide recently was a branch of the Moloney clan.
Over 150 members of the Moloney family, all descended from James and Anne Moloney, gathered in Loughrea, County Galway for a weekend that none will ever forget.
According to one of family members who helped muster the participants, Maggie Moloney Davis from New York, relatives came from all over Ireland and the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Australia, and Indonesia.
The Moloneys have maintained strong links throughout the years, said reunion coordinator Ciaran Coakley, who currently lives in the UK.
The family homestead in Ross has been renovated and continues to be the force that keeps the family connected, he said.
Teresa Moloney and her son Raymond, who live in Ross, helped to make the reunion a success by welcoming all 150 cousins home.
Coakley thanked Maureen Fanthom from County Wicklow, who developed the Moloney family heritage website, and Sean Moloney, from County Galway, who coordinated the musical tribute to the Ballinakill Ceili Band, founded by his grandfather Stephen, his father Eddie and his uncle Kevin.
Maggie Moloney Davis, who was tasked with rounding up the American Moloneys, said that the gathering was an opportunity of a lifetime for generations of Moloneys to learn about, and celebrate, their family connections, and their Irish roots.