Johnnie’s ‘Born for Hardship’ Launch on Saturday Night at 8pm

Johnnie Roche returns for another launch and book signing session to the River Island Hotel with his latest, ‘Born for Hardship’ on this Saturday night at 8pm. Photograph: John Walsh

Just over a year and a half ago local farmer, Johnnie Roche penned, published and launched a comprehensive account in book form of the National Farmers’ Association march on Dublin in 1966 and his significant part in it.

Memoir of his Life

Now he’s back with a memoir of his life and 66 years of involvement in voluntary bodies in his native Castleisland.

The May 2017 launched book titled Listowel to The Liffey chronicled a very specific and public event in his life and, indeed, in that of Ireland at the time.

Now, his 328 page tome takes a closer look and the man behind the image of the farmer, farm leader, committee and community activist and family man.

Through Changing Times

The book, Born for Hardship – A Life through Changing Times takes in the massive changes he has seen and experienced in that time.

“The book is an attempt at a social history of my time from the 1930s to today. I was slow in doing it at all and even when I got into it I had my doubts about it on several fronts,” said Johnnie at the weekend as he clutched the first book off the press.

Expertise and Encouragement

Janet Murphy’s expertise in the area of publishing and her encouragement kept me going and I’m glad now that it’s done.

“People close to me have persuaded me to tell my story to record my experiences as a rural farm leader through very changing and sometimes turbulent times,

“The only context is which I feel I can do so is in the story of my life,” said Johnnie in the foreword of the book,” said Johnnie.

Saturday Night 8pm Launch

Born for Hardship will be launched in the River Island Hotel on Saturday night 8pm and all are welcome.

There’s a link to the 2017 launch of Listowel to The Liffey also in that Johnnie’s great friend from all those years, Michael Kerins from The Kerries will also perform the official duties at Saturday night’s launch.

You can hear Johnnie Roche ‘In Conversation’ with Joe McGill on Radio Kerry this Wednesday evening from 6pm.

Born for Hardship – A Life through Changing Times is on sale at all local shops at €15 per copy. Johnnie will donate €1 from each book sale to the Kerry Hospice Foundation.

Johnnie Roche can be contacted on 087 13 22 808. Email:

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