Fond farewell to Nancy McCormack, an extraordinary woman

Nancy McCormack (nee Giles), an extraordinary woman who contributed much to Longford life, died in January at the age of 82.

Nancy McCormack (nee Giles), an extraordinary woman who contributed much to Longford life, died in January at the age of 82.

Born on March 16, 1930, Nancy was born the youngest of four siblings and had three older brothers - Jack, George and Risteárd O Glaisne (author of 30 books).

A keen hockey player, athlete and gymnast, the late Nancy McCormack was educated at Bandon Grammar School and Wesley College, Dublin. She was also the receipent of the first place honor in the Housecraft Course at Alexandra College, Dublin.

In 1949, her brother Jack brought Edwin McCormack home to Cork on a visit from Gurteen Agricultural College where they pair were studying and when Edwin built outhouses the following year on the Giles Farm, he and Nancy became more acquainted. They married in July 1957 and were inseparable. Over the next 55 years, they resided in a number of locations in Co Longford including Newtownforbes, Battery Road, Longford; Colehill and Viewmount. They also lived for a time in Hampshire. Together the couple had four children - Clodagh, Gillian, Niall and Brian - of whom they were most proud and in later years, Nancy was blessed with her 13 grandchildren, all of whom brought great joy and happiness to her life.

Nancy was a pillar of the Longford Methodist Church and was involved in numerous activities there, including arranging flowers, cleaning and playing the organ. In fact she played the organ for over 35 years and served as Sunday School Superintendent for 45 years. She loved children and young people and very much enjoyed the company of the elderly, many of whom she visited regularly. For many years she visited the residents of Ashford House in Longford at least once a week and just 10 days before her death, she entertained the residents of the house at her home, so that she could say goodbye to them. She had a real heart for people - she had time for everyone she met and always made them feel special. Nancy went out of her way to help where she could and was committed to prayer.

In 1986, the later Nancy McCormack published a book entitled ‘Death: Words of Comfort’ in an effort to help people cope with death, dying and loss. She was a fantastic cook and baked regularly. Every year she made hundreds of pounds of jams and marmalades for all her friends and hosted many’s the best dinner party in Longford. She will also be remembered for her wonderful cups of tea.

Nancy also loved good conversation and was most at home among her flowers or in the garden. She was also a very good dressmaker and reading novels, and attending plays and musicals brought her great joy. She and Edwin also loved to travel, and Nancy had visited many places in Ireland and throughout Europe prior to her passing. She was strong and determined and when she put her mind to something - she achieved whatever that was, and with perfection. The late Nancy McCormack also had a great head for figures and was an entrepreneur, motivator and mentor. She was very involved in the running of the family farm in Colehill and later with her two son’s farming and business activities.

She died surrounded by her loving family. May she Rest in Peace.