It was a standing room only crowd at Áras Uí Chonghaile James Connolly Visitor Centre as family, friends, colleagues, and supporters gathered to remember and celebrate the life of Rita O’Hare.
Gerry Adams spoke of Rita’s commitment and her extraordinary work in the United States to grow support for Sinn Féin and a new and United Ireland.
He discussed the ways in which she connected with the labor movement in America and how she worked closely with Terry O’Sullivan of LiUNA and John Samuelson of the Transit Workers Union in order to make the dream of a James Connolly center a reality.
Rita’s husband Brendan described her admiration and reverence for the work and message of James Connolly and said that she would have been very proud of the events of the day as well as of the plaque which was unveiled at the center. He told everyone that she would also be eager to remind everyone that it is time to put our shoulders to the wheel and get back to work.
Dawn Doyle spoke beautifully, sharing stories about how she first met Rita and how Rita was not only fiercely devoted to the work, but also made time to get to know the families, children, grandchildren, and stories of everyone with whom she worked.
Harry Connolly, Executive Director at Failte Feirste Thiar, said, “There would be no Áras Uí Chonghaile without Rita O’Hare”
A recording of the event will be made available soon.