• There are 70 American students in the county Roscommon village of Ballintober at present, all taking part in an annual international archeological study programme entitled “Castles in Communities, the archeological project at Ballintober Castle”. 

    This evening at 7pm at the old school house in Ballintober, everyone is invited to attend a lecture on the 2018/2019 field schools and it will provide an opportunity for members of the general community to learn about what the students are discovering.

    Rebekah Mills is one of the US students taking part in the study programme and she has been giving Midwest News more details about the programme and the experience of learning and living in the Ballintober community.

  • US President elect Joe Biden will run a different administration to President Donald Trump, and the need for a new relationship between the US and Europe is vital, according to former Taoiseach Enda Kenny.

    Enda Kenny knows Joe Biden quite well, having met him on numerous occasions both in the US and in Ireland, when Enda was the Taoiseach and Joe Biden was US Vice President during the Barrack Obama years.

    He says Mr Biden is already getting to grips with the massive agenda now before him – the control of the Covid pandemic in the US, the racial issues and unrest in the country, and the need now to develop better relationships between the US and the World Trade Organisation, the World Health Organisation, and with Europe, China and Russia.

    Enda spoke to Midwest News today about how he felt when Joe Biden became the US President elect at the weekend.

    The former Taoiseach also urged the GAA to consider neutral venues for All Ireland football semi-finals and final this year, considering that fans are unlikely to be in the grounds under Covid Restrictions.

  • A man in New York has pleaded guilty to drink driving and causing a crash that claimed the lives of Tourmakeady man John Heneghan and his wife, last May.

    33 years old John Heneghan, along with his wife, Caitlyn Holtzman (aged 32) were travelling to a wedding in New York when a pick-up truck crashed into their car as it was stopped at a red light killing them instantly.Three passengers who were with the couple in the vehicle sustained injuries.

    At court in recent days in Saratoga County, New York, the truck driver, 59-year-old Dickie Winn admitted he was drunk and driving recklessly in his Dodge Ram jeep when he crashed into the couple’s car.

    Mr. Winn, who had a blood alcohol reading twice the legal limit, pleaded guilty to aggravated vehicular homicide in return for a promised sentence of six to19 years in prison. He could otherwise have faced a sentence of 25 years.

    The plea agreement also calls for restitution and for Mr. Winn to use an ignition interlock device, which requires the driver to blow into a mouthpiece on the device before starting a vehicle.

    Dickie Winn, who served in the US Army for nearly 30 years and did several tours of duty, was ordered to surrender his driver’s licence and will be on probation for three years on release.

    John Heneghan, who had lived in the States for a number of years, married Caitlyn from Pennsylvania in 2016.

    Following the tragedy earlier this year couple’s ashes were brought to Tourmakeady for a private interment.




  • Oliver Browne a native of The Neale, now living in the US  is to be honoured by a leading Irish community group in New Jersey on the night before Mayo play New York in Gaelic Park, New York.

    He was the goalkeeper on The Neale team that won the club’s only ever Mayo Minor Football Championship title in 1980, and has now been named as Clubman of the Year by The Friendly Sons of the Shillelagh Essex Chapter, based in West Orange, New Jersey.

    A large group of family and friends from Ireland and throughout America will attend the presentation dinner on Saturday, May 4th – Mayo Day – at the Mayfair Farms, West Orange.

    The citation from The Friendly Sons of the Shillelagh noted that Oliver “is a loyal member of the  order who has tirelessly contributed his time and energy as a member, committee head, trustee and officer. He has chaired the Exhibition of Irish Sports for many years, a family event that features boys and girls Gaelic football matches and men’s rugby and hurling games.

    Tickets and further information on the event are available at:

    On the day before the dinner, Friday, May 3rd, Oliver will host a Mayo GAA Fans Gathering at the Shillelagh Club, New Jersey – just 30 minutes from the George Washington Bridge.

    A benefit raffle on the night will raise funds for the Friends of Darragh / Kevin Bell Repatriation Fund. Darragh Walsh was a Neale footballer who died tragically in a car accident in 2013 in Qatar aged 22. 

  • Rent the Runway, a US fashion company is to create 150 jobs in Galway with the opening of its first international technology hub in the city.

    The New York-headquartered company, formally established an Irish subsidiary in January, and the company now says it intends to hire 150 engineers and developers over the next three years to coincide with the establishment of what will be its first operation outside of the United States.

    The company’s chief technology officer Josh Builder speaking to today’s Irish Times, says that employees in Galway will be working “hand-in-hand” with the company’s US-based R&D teams to tackle core technology challenges that are critical to Rent the Runway’s operations.

    The Galway team will be undertaking in-house software development unique to the company as well as offering support for its mobile and desktop platform.

    Rent the Runway is seeking to disrupt the $2.4 trillion dollar global fashion industry by enabling women to rent, rather than buy, designer outfits for events such as weddings.

    It carries designer apparel and accessories for rent from over 600 designers which are made available via a subscription service. Members pay $89 (€79) a month for a maximum of four items while an unlimited option is available for $159 (€141).

    The service will not, however, be available to customers in Ireland.

    The company’s Galway office will be temporarily located at the Portershed hub from next month on, with a more permanent home opening later this year at the newly-renovated Piscatorial School building, overlooking the Claddagh in the city centre.