Over €4,000 was raised today at a charity bake sale held in memory of beloved friend to many and well known volunteer, local lady Josie Duff.
Huge numbers turned out to Ardee Daycare Centre for the bake sale to remember Josie and also her cousin, Kathy McDonald, who tragically lost their lives earlier this year. The entire community of Ardee was devastated when the two ladies died after being hit by a car having disembarked a bus at The Hunterstown Inn on the N2.
In total, €4,185 was raised with the funds split down the middle to two local charities – Ardee Hospice and Ardee Daycare Centre.
It will come as no surprise to learn that support for today’s event was plentiful. As well as the bake sale, there was an very popular raffle held on the day – with prizes from amongst others Nosh Cafe Bistro, Lanney’s SuperValu, Hickey’s Farm Fresh and McGoey’s Pharmacy.
“We anticipated seeing a lot of people today but this has blown me away,” Josie’s daughter Loretta told ThisIsArdee.ie. “There was a great variety of cakes and treats on sale and everybody here today were volunteering. All of the ladies just arrived from nowhere to help us.
“All of the businesses in Ardee were just unbelievable, between financial donations and all the hampers, gift cards and gift certificates. The Daycare Centre have given us this whole space and they were here this morning with us helping to set up. Liam Hand was here and Joe and they opened up and helped us. They are incredible, just incredible,” Loretta, who lives in Washington, continued.
“Because Mom spent so much time here – when we were younger we remember her spending a lot of time here at this organisation. It’s really sentimental to us.”
Among those in attendance today were Josie’s husband John, daughters Loretta and Mary and Kathy’s daughter Alison McDonald Crahan. The family made cheque presentations to Liam Hand of Ardee Daycare Centre and Kathleen McKenny of Ardee Hospice.
Josie was well known in the town for her work with both the Hospice and the Daycare Centre, as well as the Irish Wheelchair Association – where she has a room named after her. Now, after the success of today’s event, plans are afoot to make this an annual event in Josie’s memory. The family are also very keen to raise funds for the IWA, with it being another cause so close to Josie’s heart.
“She worked tirelessly throughout her life, fundraising for various charities in the community,” Josie’s daughter Loretta told us earlier this month. “We want to honour her memory by continuing this work.
Back in May, Josie was posthumously awarded the Hospice Sunflower Hero award at an event at the Mansion House in Dublin, with her husband John and daughters Mary and Fiona in attendance. Josie also has boys – Kevin and Peter – based in the States.