Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Joe O'Leary and Maureen O'Hara

This is a neat one, but not for the obvious reasons. Yes, Maureen O'Hara was a fabulously famous actress but the most interesting person in this photo I think is Joe O'Leary.
He was absolutely crazy about my great aunt "Kay" (Catherine McIntyre) and even though they were quite advanced in age by the time they met, he was rather insistant that he wanted to marry her and asked her several times before she finally, tentetively, said yes.
I remember his coming over the house in Roslindale many time but one day when I was in the dining room watching TV I was absolutely shocked at what I saw. Mr. O'Leary came in the back door, swept Kay up in his arms and greeted her in a big bear hug and a very passionate kiss on her neck.
Highly charged romantical-type greeting, stuff in my very young mind that only happened when either Olivia Newton-John and/or John Travolta were involved and preferably when both were involved in a song and dance number.
Even tho I knew that "Kay was going to marry Mr. O'Leary", in my young mind, romance was surely the last thing they would ever be thinking of, "old people" just didn't think about those sorts of things, did they?!?
In the end, the event never happened, as I recall Kay dragged her feet a little too long and Mr. O'Leary passed away.
But I could be wrong on how it ended, like I said, I was viewing the whole relationship from the corner of my eye and the point of view of an 11 year old more occupied with the TV in the dining room.
A few posts ago I mentioned friendships but going through old letters sent to Kay it is clear that she had many admirers and some serious relationships developed from those. These men who were never really related to us in any way have no real branch on the family tree but I do remember Mr. O'Leary and how significant his relationship to Kay was.
Even if he was never really realted to us, the relation is worth remembering.

This picture was most likely taken at a fund raiser of some sort, I am quite ceratin that Maureen O'Hara was never a dinner guest at the Roslidale house tho that's a bit of a shame, I bet the plastic would have come off the furniture for her....

1 comment:

  1. We had a similar situation in our family.A year after my father passed away my Mom met Joe. Their relationship lasted well over a decade and my Mom was disappointed that
    Joe never "popped the question".It was a case of him worrying over how his three daughters would deal with him remarrying. Even after Mom passed away Joe was golf partners with my brother in law until age forced him to give it up.