Wreath-laying ceremony in tribute to fallen volunteer

At the wreath laying at the grave of Frank O’Grady were, from left, wreath laying at the grave of Frank O’Grady

A commemoration has taken place to mark the 100th anniversary of the death of Frank O’Grady at Mountain Stage.

Organised by the local cumann of Fianna Fail, it remembered the life and times of the man who died in a conflict with the Free State forces in Glenbeigh in 1923.

The late Frank O’Grady

O’Grady was arrested, unarmed, at a neighbour’s house along with his comrade Michael Cahill, the grandfather of long-serving Kerry County Council member, Cllr Michael Cahill.

When Frank O’Grady was identified, he was shot dead at Mountain Stage.

He was born in 1895 into a farming family in Killnabrack Lower, Glenbeigh. He joined the Irish Volunteers at a young age and was appointed captain in the Glenbeigh Company of the 6th Battalion of Kerry No1 Brigade.

Active during the War of Independence, he was involved in the attack on a military detachment at Glenbeigh Railway Station in May 1921.

Senator Mark Daly (left) and Cllr Michael Cahill laying a wreath at the graveside.
Pictures: Brian Sugrue

After the signing of the treaty O’Grady took the IRA stance and became active in the Mid Kerry region during the Civil War, spending time on the run to avoid arrest, execution or being shot.

O’Grady was 26 when he was murdered and had been an active Republican for 10 years.

The commemoration commenced with Mass in St James’s Church, Glenbeigh following by a wreath-laying graveside ceremony.

An oration was delivered by Senator Mark Daly and the introduction was by Cllr Michael Cahill.

The commemoration party later proceeded to the monument at Mountain Stage where Amhrán na bhFiann was played and another wreath was laid.

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