The Late Michael ‘Mikey Bawn’ Conway, Pound Road, Castleisland

The late Michael ‘Mikey Bawn’ Conway as many people will remember him. ©Photograph: John Reidy 17-7-2002
The late Mikey Bawn Conway pictured at The Crown Hotel, Castleisland with an autographed, Eric Cantona / Manchesster United jersey at a Castleisland AFC function in 1996. ©Photograph: John Reidy 31-5-1996

The death has occurred of Michael ‘Mikey Bawn’ Conway, 2 Cahereens West, Castleisland, Co. Kerry and late of Pound Road, Castleisland.

September 27th 2018, peacefully after a long illness bravely borne, surrounded by his loving family in the tender care of the Palliative Care Team at University Hospital Kerry.

Sadly missed by his uncle Michael, sisters, brothers, nephews, nieces, cousins, neighbours and many friends.

May His Gentle Soul Rest In Peace.

That the late Mikey Bawn (69) was a once-off is a fact that anyone who ever met him couldn’t deny.

I got a sudden whiff of Paraffin Oil somewhere lately and it transported me away from where I was at the time.

I can’t remember where I was but I know exactly where it took me to. The moment I got that scent I was taken away back to Hogan’s hardware shop at Lower Main Street some time in the mid 1960s and Mikey Bawn was helping out there during school holidays at that time.

He filled my can one day and it must have been the first time I was that close to the raw scent of the oil or that quantity of it and the smell planted itself in my brain.

There wasn’t a house around here that didn’t have a can of Paraffin Oil for starting the fires in the morning.

Later on I also associate Mikey Bawn with long and great nights at The Market Bar and at Brennan’s and with a little area of Pound Road known locally as The Cúilín.

Mikey Bawn was a local pub loyalist and you’d never catch him drinking anywhere up beyond the Market House when there were pubs in his own neighbourhood.

After the Market Bar and Brennan’s he moved to Skevenas and The Kingdom House.

They say that reality is only for those who lack imagination and Mikey Bawn had it in spades.

Pure, down to earth honesty was another one of his traits. He had opinions on everything going on in the world at any given time and had no bother in expressing them and defending them against all comers.

Matt Busby, Georgie Best, Tommy Docherty, Denis Law, Bobby Charlton and anyone associated with his beloved Manchester United were his unrivaled heroes.

His work in Burlington in Tralee in the 1980s would be a great topic of nightly discussions at The Market Bar.

The finer details of warpers and slashers would be illustrated with matches and bar mats and coins in a bid to explain their workings to the clueless around him.

He spent a few years in working in England after Burlington before coming home where he conducted a busy window cleaning business around the town up to the time his illness first struck him in early 2002.

We won’t see his likes again. Those who knew him will know that every syllable of that frightfully abused phrase is applicable to Mikey Bawn. May God be good to him.

Mikey Bawn’s Funeral Arrangements

Reposing at Tangney’s Funeral Home, Church Street, Castleisland on Monday evening from 5pm to 7pm.

Funeral arriving to Castleisland Parish Church on Tuesday morning for Requiem Mass at 11am. Burial afterwards in Kilbanivane Cemetery, Castleisland. Family flowers only please. Donations, if desired, to the Palliative Care Unit U.H.K. c/o Tangney’s Funeral Home. House private please.

Date Published: Friday 28th September 2018. Date of Death: Thursday 27th September 2018.

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