Pat Minnock was a worthy recipient of the second annual Unsung Hero of Offaly award.
In addition to being a key player in many local volunteer groups, Pat works “under the radar” providing assistance and advice to people in her local community.
Pat is rightly considered the quintessential community champion in his adopted region of Cappincur.
Always affable and cheerful, Pat grew up on a mixed farm at Derries in Rahan, but moved to Cappincur when he married Rose Finlay, of Clonmore.
The happy couple raised seven children, five boys and two girls, all of whom were very successful.
Pat now considers himself a naturalized Cappincur and is deeply proud of the community spirit that is contagious in the region, largely centered around the local GAA club and its recent successes on the playing field.
He worked most of his career as a salesperson at Readymix, but is also a farmer on his land in Clonmore.
He joined the Tullamore & District Lions Club in 1989 and views his membership in the Lions club as the real beginning of his involvement in community work in the greater Tullamore area.
The Cappincur resident has been chairman of the Trobalgon Lions Vacation Subcommittee for over 30 years and they bring older people from the region on a well-deserved vacation to the resort of Munster every year.
He is also involved in a host of other projects with the Lions Club, including the Hooves4Hospice campaign which aims to provide a hospice for the four counties of Midland.
Pat’s work with the Lourdes Invalids Fund dates back to 1982 and he visited the French Marian Shrine a total of 33 times with other volunteers from the Diocese of Meath.
Pat assists sick and disabled pilgrims traveling from the diocese to Lourdes and fulfills several roles.
Pat is also involved in the Daingean Parish Finance Committee and fundraising for Tullamore Parish Funds.
The young 70-year-old has also climbed Croagh Patrick 21 times, no less than ten of which have been completed barefoot.
Pat is also involved in the Cappincur Hall, Cappincur Community Alert and Cappincur Cemetery Committee and has also found time to donate over 120 pints of blood to the Blood Transfusion Board.
Outside of her formal volunteering, Pat helps individuals in her local community with the goal of combating the effects of rural isolation, especially among the elderly.
While the formal aspect of Pat’s volunteer work is well known across Offaly, what may not be as well recognized but worth it is the number of older people he helps on a daily basis. in a private capacity. It carries people who have no transportation to appointments in hospitals in Galway and Dublin and will not take any compensation for diesel or its own time.
He also cares for a number of elderly people, helping them with tasks such as bringing sod, lighting fires, collecting messages, filling out forms and paying bills that these people. find it invaluable.
Despite her busy workload, Pat also finds time to pursue her hobby of restoring and exhibiting vintage cars and tractors.
Now 70 years old, despite being physically fit and two decades younger, Pat looks forward to spending many more years of service to his local community.