Monday 16 September 2019

May Power (93) died peacefully as she lived

The late May Power.
The late May Power.

Mary (May) Power (nee Rossiter) of St. Aidan's Crescent, Wexford died as she lived -peacefully, on July 8 in St. John's Hospital, Enniscorthy at the age of 93 years.

May was the the beloved wife of Peter Power and the late Harry Murphy who sadly died in 1962 when their family were young. Some years after Harry died, she married Peter whom she met at the wedding of a mutual cousin.

She gently slipped away as she sat in a chair with Peter beside her, after enjoying lunch in St. John's where she had been a resident for just 18 days.

May suffered great sadness on the sudden and untimely passing of her two eldest children, Kieran at 48 years old and Pauline at 60 years. Her two remaining children Jeanne (Ffrench) and Laura (Harpur) tried to fill the void by doing everything possible to help restore May's joy in life.

The Wexford woman was fondly known as one of the Rossiter twins of Bride Place who were born while the Black and Tans were in town. When their mother went into labour, their father was given an escort as he rushed to get the midwife.

Twins Madge and May served their time as tailors with Paddy and Sammy Gaul of Thomas Street and Bride Place. Madge sadly predeceased her sister at the age of 79, leaving her with a sadness that could never be measured or consoled. May's talent with a sewing machine was legendary. She could make anything. She created all her children's clothes, her daughters' wedding dresses and grandchildren's christening gowns.

'She had a great pair of hands,' said her daughter Jeanne who ran the Curtain Shop on Wexford's Main Street for many years. May helped out in the shop and was very proud of Jeanne's achievement in business.

May remained independent and active up to the last. On one occasion when she was 92 years old, Jeanne called in to find her with one foot on a ladder and the other on the mantlepiece in the sitting room painting the coving.

On the day before she died, she had her hair permed as she had done every week during her lifetime.

She loved music and dancing and up to her late 80's, she travelled all over the county to ballroom dancing events. When she was a young woman, she won a cup in a dancing competition in the Old Town Hall in 1939 and it was one of her treasured possessions.

May is survived by her daughters Jeanne and Laura; her seven grandchildren and two great grandchildren; her sons-in-law; daughter-in-law; brother-in-law; nephews and nieces; extended family and friends.

Her daughter Laura said that whenever she was asked what she would like for Mother's Day, birthdays or Christmas, May's answer was always the same -'Peace'.

May was buried in Barntown cemetery beside her grandparents whom she loved and respected. Her Month's Mind Mass will take place in Bride Street Church on Monday, August 8 at 10am.

Wexford People