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Ballycotton Lifeboat Honours Mechanic

30th January 2011
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Ballycotton Lifeboat Honours Mechanic
On Saturday night, 29 January, a retirement party was held for Michael Lane Walsh in the Schooner Bar, Ballycotton. Michael was a member of the Ballycotton RNLI lifeboat for 37 years, joining when his father, Mikey Lane Walsh, was Coxswain. In 1977 Michael became second mechanic of the RNLI all weather lifeboat and in 1978 he took up the full time position of station mechanic. This is a role he carried out with exceptional diligence until his retirement on Tuesday last, 25 January 2011.

Michael has become well known throughout the RNLI community over the years and the 29 January was marked on several calendars for quite some time as the date they would be travelling to Ballycotton to help celebrate the retirement of an exceptional, modest man.

Lifeboat personnel travelled from RNLI lifeboat stations in Ballyglass Co. Mayo, Achill Island, Courtmacsherry, Rosslare, Helvic and Youghal joining with Ballycotton lifeboat members, family and friends to help celebrate a man's commitment to a job he treated more as a vocation than a job. The Training Divisional Inspector, Owen Medland and Divisional Base Manager, Derek Potter from the RNLI head quarters in Dublin attended and spoke of their long association with Michael Lane Walsh. Several presentations were made with the good wishes from everyone present, along with those from lifeboat crewmembers who were unable to leave their stations. Derek Potter told those present that normally they would be presenting a long service vellum to the retiree but in Michael's case he is not finished yet. For the time being he will not be hanging up his life jacket but will keep it in readiness for the next time someone calls for help from the Ballycotton RNLI lifeboat.

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