The Bull is Back!

John ‘The BULL’ O’Donoghue is poised to make a dramatic return to politics and wants a place on the Fianna Fáil ticket to contest the local elections next May.

The bombshell revelation comes almost nine years to the day after O’Donoghue was forced to resign as Ceann Comhairle over his lavish expenses while Chairman of the Dáil and a Government Minister.

Fianna Fáil councillors, party officers and grassroots members are shell-shocked by the revelation of O’Donoghue’s planned return to politics, which the Cahersiveen man managed to keep top secret until the weekend.


What happened in Kerry this week

Former minister and Ceann Comhairle John O'Donoghue is poised to make a dramatic comeback to politics - and wants a place on the Fianna Fáil ticket to contest the local elections next May.

The bombshell revelation comes exactly nine years after O'Donoghue was forced to resign as Ceann Comhairle over his lavish expenses while he was Chairman of the Dáil and a Government Minister.

Little Ella Courtney weighed just over one pound when she was born - now she’s getting ready for her first birthday. The Tralee girl has been dubbed a ‘warrior’ by parents Leanne Brennan and Patrick Courtney.

The father of a missing 14-year-old teen is appealing for the public’s help to find him - fearing that he’s sick, hurt or in trouble. Danny Coffey could be anywhere, his worried father Patrick Coffey, said on Wednesday.

Tralee man Stefan Okunbar this week becomes the latest Kerry GAA talent to seek glory Down Under - the current Munster U20 Player of the Year has signed a two-year rookie contract with the Geelong Cats.

Drones could soon be flying over the skies of Kerry in a countywide crackdown on illegal dumping. Kerry County Council confirmed that they’re considering following other Councils in their use of drones to catch culprits in the act.

All-Ireland hero Darran O’Sullivan called time on his inter-county football career this week - but the most exciting chapter of his life is just about to begin. The former Kerry captain and wife Laura are expecting their first baby next month.

'Niall was one of  a kind'

Perhaps Mary Counihan put it best of all when she remembered her 16-year-old nephew, Niall McGillicuddy, at his Funeral Mass in Killarney on Tuesday.

“Niall was one of a kind,” she told the packed St Mary’s Cathedral.

“Witty, mischievous, considerate and always positive. He bore his illness with great dignity and grace, without complaint, which really showed what a special boy he was.”

Just a few short weeks ago, a group of Niall’s pals travelled with Killarney priest Fr Jim Lenihan to Medjugorje.


Born weighing just one pound, miracle baby Ella celebrates her 1st birthday

A miracle baby who weighed just over one pound when she was born was given little chance of survival - but will celebrate her first birthday next week.

Dubbed a ‘warrior’ by her parents Leanne Brennan and Patrick Courtney, little Ella Courtney from Tralee was born three months early on October 25 last year.

Next Thursday, Leanne and Patrick are planning a huge celebration to celebrate Ella’s remarkable year, at home in The Willows, Clonmore.

And although Ella officially turns one year old that day, her first birthday was expected to be well after Christmas - her original due date was January 11.

“She is our little miracle girl,” Leanne told Kerry’s Eye this week. “She’s a warrior. We’re really looking forward to celebrating her first birthday - it will be such a special day.”


€2.3m expansion at Ballybunion school

Over €2.3m funding is to be injected into a North Kerry secondary school next month, as a state-of-the-art extension begins.

St Joseph’s Secondary School in Ballybunion will have five new classrooms, a new science lab, an autism spectrum disorder unit and 19 additional car-parking spaces when the work is complete.

The school caters for around 330 students, and has 37 staff members.


'Cardiac responders team saved my life'

A heart attack was the last thing on the mind of Niall Crowley from Headford, Killarney, as he drove home from work last March. He had been to his doctor a few days previously and, while his blood pressure was slightly up, his cholestrol was a very healthy level.

“I got a touch of a pain inside in work but I thought I’d pulled a muscle,” he said. “When I got about a mile outside Barraduff, the pain was something savage. You couldn’t imagine the pain.”



Favourites come to life during Book Week

Presentation Primary became a fantastical wonderland as the girls dressed up as their favourite literary characters to kickstart Book Week at the school.

At assembly on Friday morning, Alice in Wonderland, the Cat in the Hat, Minnie Mouse, Maleficent and many more came to school dressed in their best.

Smart heroine Hermione Granger also made an appearance and the famed wizard Harry Potter was well represented too. There was even a suffragette and Mary Poppins was there to make sure everyone was organised.



Recovery Haven outreach celebrates first year

Volunteers nailed it last Thursday at the first anniversary celebrations for Recovery Haven’s outreach facility at the Killorglin Community Centre by declaring a ‘pink nail’ day.

Volunteer Patricia Tyther was delighted with the support they received.

Working with the outreach service since it opened last year, Patricia and the other volunteers meet with cancer patients, survivors and their families on the second Thursday of every month.


Perfect conditions at Abbeydorney ploughing

“It’s amazing,” Tom O’Mahony said, “what a difference 24 hours can make.”

On Saturday, Tom and the rest of the Abbeydorney Ploughing Society were staring gloomily upward for some break in the rain clouds but Sunday was bright and sunny from the very break of dawn and the result was a set of ideal conditions for the opening ploughing match of the season in Kerry.

“The rain actually helped a lot because the ground at Barney Dowling’s had been rock hard beforehand and with the bit of moisture and the warm sunshine, it meant we had perfect conditions and it also meant we got a big crowd in for the afternoon. It was great to see people able to get around in low shoes,” Tom said.



Abbeydorney to stage huge performance fundaiser

SOME of Abbeydorney’s biggest and best personalities are all set to fight it out as part their latest fundraiser - Battle of the Parish - next week.

It’s been two years since Abbeydorney Hurling Club hosted what was one of the biggest events in the club’s history, when they brought Battle of the Parish to the stage at Ballyroe Heights Hotel, in front of a huge audience of 600 people.

The event made over €23,000 profit for the club and now they’re planning to do it all again on Sunday, October 28.



Greenway in line for millions

Cllr Thornton expects major funding next month

The North Kerry Greenway is set for a boost of up to €5m in funding to help further develop the popular public amenity.

Fine Gael councillor Aoife Thornton has confirmed that funding is expected to be made available next month.

The large amount of funding will be used to extend the existing trail from Abbeyfeale to the Tim Kennelly Roundabout, Listowel, passing through the parish of Duagh.


Respect...that's all this cyclist demands from motorists

A Tralee cyclist wants motorists to respect cycle lanes and show more consideration for cyclists.

Malachy Kelly has been living and cycling in Tralee for the past twenty years, having moved here from Roscommon to study in ITT. He says the biggest issue affecting cyclists in Tralee is the number of people not respecting cycle lanes.

“I view cycling as my main mode of transport on a day to day basis. But on average I drive over 1,000km per week, travelling all over the country, so I can see both sides of the discussion.

“I suppose the most obvious thing is the complete disregard shown for cycle lanes. They are routinely used as car parking spaces, especially at peak hours. I live in Caherslee, and I’ve yet to see the lanes unobstructed, regardless of the time of day or night,” he said.



Coleman celebrates a job he loves

Colman Quirke of Cahersiveen has one huge advantage - he loves his job.

It’s in his genes and last week he celebrated 40 years behind the counter at his family’s newsagents in Cahersiveen.

The newsagents has been in the Quirke family for 65 years, bought by Coleman’s parents, Bride and Sean, back in 1953.

And Coleman says it’s been an honour and a privilege to be a part of it.

“I knocked the shop to the ground in 1990 but never marked the opening. A customer said it was about time I did and as we’ve just refitted it was a great excuse to have an official opening,” said Coleman.