IT was a tight squeeze, but 500 people including Hollywood actor Patrick Bergin crammed into Ollie Hayes’ pub to toast their favourite son and wish him a ‘Happy Independence Day’.
On July 4, crowds gathered for the launch of ‘Is Feidir Linn: A Golden Ticket to Moneygall’, a new book written by the Irish Independent’s Eimear Ni Bhraonain, with photography by Jeff Harvey.
Henry ‘The Eighth Cousin’ Healy officially launched the book in his uncle’s pub.
It charts the unlikely story of how the world’s most powerful leader traced his roots to Moneygall - ‘the dot on the map along the main road to Limerick’ - and how one rural community found itself gripped by Obama-mania.
In May 2007, when an American genealogist traced the lineage of Fulmouth Kearney, both Mr Obama and Moneygall were relative unknowns.
“Moneygall was an underdog and so too was Barack Obama. But every step of the way Moneygall has backed Obama,” explained Eimear. “We never thought it would come to the stage where Barack Obama was President of the United States of America and (he would) acknowledge this tiny village.
“But this book isn’t just about Obama, it’s about an amazing community spirit, about the ‘feidir linn’ attitude,” she explained.
Only 3,000 copies of the book, which costs €25, have been printed for its first edition. The book is for sale on-line at www.themoneygallbook.com and in News and Views in Roscrea and Bridge Stores on Bridge Street. More information from www.TheMoneygallBook.com or Eimear Ni Bhraonain on (086) 0200016.