ONE of Enniskillen’s oldest residents Thomas McBrien has passed away aged 102 years.
Thomas, who lived in Derrin Road, Cornagrade, for over 60 years, died last week after a short illness.
A ‘true Enniskillener’ Thomas was born between the bridges in Water Street in 1920 and lived in the island town all his life.
When interviewed on his 100 birthday Thomas revealed his secret to long life was a ‘healthy lifestyle’ and in his latter years enjoys an occasional glass of red wine in the evening.
A modest man who loved his home town, Thomas became involved in a number of several community projects over the years.
During World War II he joined the Royal Air Force and served as an electrician for six years working on a host of aircraft including the famous Catalina flying boats. After training in Scotland and Northern England he was posted to Singapore before being evacuated from there just 24 hours before the attack by the Japanese.
On returning home in 1946 Thomas, a skilled electrician, he worked with several employers around the town.
A man known for his community spirit he was instrumental in setting up the local branch of the electricians’ trade union in Enniskillen and was involved in amateur dramatics helping stage several productions with St Michael’s Amateur Dramatic Society for over 20 years and assisting in many school productions. He also helped establish St Michael’s Catholic Scouts in the 1960s and was a founder member of the town’s Credit Union, being member number four.
His real joy, though was photography and as an amateur photographer he loved taking photos of his family around Enniskillen. Indeed a number of his early photos were published in Mary Gordon’s recent book of Enniskillen entitled ‘A Century of Memories’.
He was pre-deceased by his late wife Bridie and is survived by children Kathleen, (Hazlett), Christina, (Francie) Kevin and Michael (Maggie).
Following Requiem Mass in St Michael’s Church, Enniskillen, this morning, Wednesday at 11am, the burial will be to Cross Cemetery.
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