Mother who died on Galtee Mountains ‘idolised’ her children, funeral told

Mother who died on Galtee Mountains ‘idolised’ her children, funeral told

Olivia Kelleher

A 51-year-old mother of two who died while taking part in a Climb with Charlie charity event at the Galtee Mountains in Co Tipperary last weekend was remembered at her funeral mass today for her "ever-present smile."

A GoFundMe page set up for the young children of Cora O'Grady from Luí na Greine in Mitchelstown, Co Cork has raised in excess of €75,000 to date.

Ms O'Grady became sick as she climbed the mountain alongside her two children, Luke and Lilly, who are aged eight and eleven. She was pronounced dead at the scene last Saturday afternoon.


Her funeral mass took place at noon on Friday at the Church of Mary Conceived Without Sin in Mitchelstown with burial following in the adjoining cemetery.

Ms O'Grady's cousin Jerome told the mass that her main focus in life was her beloved children.

"Everything Cora did, everything Cora said, was about Lily and Luke. She absolutely idolised them.

"Cora not only loved her children, like most parents are obliged to do, but she enjoyed their company, she enjoyed being with them, she enjoyed watching their achievements and their progress and she was an incredibly proud mum."

Fun, joy and divilment


He said that Ms O'Grady was a "wonderful soul."

"We lost a bright light last Saturday - a beaming, shining light who brought so much fun, joy and a sense of divilment to so many people.

"The positive impact that Cora has had on so many people is seen through the incredible messages we have received as a family.

"We often heard Cora before we saw her. Her loud laugh was her way of saying hello. We knew then that our night was going to be full of fun and laughter. We'd go home with pains in our faces from it at the end of the night.


"She was like a good old Irish politician - she'd show up to the opening of an envelope. She'd show up to any garden party, barbecue, you name it.

"I think if Cora had a way to communicate with us, she'd say three things - one, mind my children, two remember me by raising a glass and most importantly, look after each other over the coming weeks and months."

She found it easy to establish connections and spread her enthusiasm with her ever-present smile

Celebrant Fr Pat O'Donoghue said that Ms O'Grady was a "people person."

"She found it easy to establish connections and spread her enthusiasm with her ever-present smile and her endearing sense of humour.

"She was engaging beyond her sense of fun and spoke up for those who needed a voice. She was deeply loyal to family and friends, someone who was funny, kind, dedicated and dependable."

Friends of Ms O'Grady have set up a GoFundMe page for her children.

"Cora adored her two children and devoted every waking hour to them. They were her life. Cora will be sadly missed by all who know her," they wrote.

"As a community, everyone wants to offer their help, so we have set up this page. All funds raised will help support Cora's two wonderful children, Luke and Lilly. Any donations will be greatly appreciated."

Ms O'Grady is survived by her children, her sisters Geraldine and Edel, brothers-in-law Michel Riand and Kieran Barrett, uncles Gerard and Eddie, aunts Theresa, Marie and Imelda, their extended families, nephews, nieces, relatives, neighbours and her many friends.

Meanwhile, a file will be prepared for the Coroner's Court following the death of Ms O'Grady. She was one of a group climbing Galtymore as part of hundreds of fundraising events nationwide for Pieta House and the Irish Motor Neurone Disease Association.

The events were organised in tribute and support of retired RTE broadcaster Charlie Bird, who was climbing Croagh Patrick in Mayo. Mr Bird has been diagnosed with motor neurone disease. His fundraising efforts have raised over €2 million for charity.

Mr Bird took to Twitter to pay tribute to Ms O'Grady, writing: "I want to offer my condolences this morning to the family and friends of Cora O'Grady from Mitchelstown in County Cork.

"Cora who was climbing in the Galty mountains took ill and passed away. Her family and friends are in my thoughts and prayers."

Donations can be made to the fundraiser for the children of Ms O'Grady here.