True loving and devoted friends

True loving and devoted friends

This couch once belonged to the Rooney family, who were neighbours of the O’Connor family in Redfe

This couch once belonged to the Rooney family, who were neighbours of the O’Connor family in Redfern. The Rooney children often helped carry Eileen O’Connor to school when she was well enough to make the short journey. Catherine Rooney, who later entered the Sisters of Mercy, recalls her father carrying Eileen into their home and placing her on this couch on many occasions. Catherine would read to Eileen, while her sister Nell turned the pages. Another sister, Maggie Rooney, helped move the O’Connor family to Coogee in 1911. In 1960, co-founder of Our Lady’s Nurses for the Poor, Rev Father Edward McGrath msc, said, “Miss Maggie Rooney, only recently deceased, will go down in history with the whole Rooney family as true loving devoted friends of Eileen and outstanding helpers and benefactors of Our Lady’s Nurses for the Poor.” The Rooney family donates the couch to the community at Our Lady’s Home, Coogee. It is the same couch depicted in the portrait of Eileen O’Connor that hangs in Our Lady’s Home, Coogee, and several contemporary photographs.

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For further reading, visit our resources page where you can discover more about the Our Lady's Nurses for the Poor, Eileen O'Connor, Fr Edward (Ted) McGrath and the work of the Brown Nurses.
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