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Caroline Leonard

10th March 2015
Caroline Leonard

#dbsc – Dublin Bay Sailing Club (DBSC) is mourning the loss of its former vice–commodore Caroline Leonard, a stalwart of the Dun Laoghaire yacht racing scene who died yesterday.

Caroline, a member of the Royal Irish Yacht Club since 1991, was for many years the mainstay of DBSC racing, first as a committee member, and then as its Rear Commodore and later Vice Commodore. In more recent times, she was the team leader for the Club's committee boats, enjoying particularly the Club's winter racing.

At its Dun Laoghaire clubhouse, the Royal Irish ensign is displayed at half mast in honour or her memory.

Caroline started her sailing career in dinghies, first in the IDRA 14 Skylark, and then with her husband, Henry moved to keelboats, racing the Ruffian, Doodlebugs, and afterwards the Sigma 33, Leeuwin. She also crewed for a time on Malcolm Alexander's Shipman, Poppy.

In a note to members today, the DBSC website says: 'Caroline will be missed enormously by her friends in Dublin Bay Sailing Club and the Royal Irish Yacht Club. They remember her calm, unflurried presence, her understated professionalism, her personal warmth and ability to resolve personal problems, her gift for friendship. And a reticence that masked a very focussed intelligence. They sympathise with Caroline's family, with her husband, friend and constant companion, Henry, and with her sons and daughters, Simon, Sarah-Jane, Shirley, Kevin and Ralph'. 

This evening, DBSC Spring Chicken Series race organiser Fintan Cairns led tributes to Caroline, a big supporter of the winter series. Her DBSC clubmate told the 38-boat Spring Chicken fleet 'It is with great sadness that I inform you of the passing of one of our own on Freebird, Caroline Leonard - wife of Henry,our RO and mother of Kevin, our results man. Caroline was the "crew boss" on Mac Lir and Freebird for many years and almost from the start of our winter racing was a great supporter, helper and friend. She will be greatly missed by us all. Our sincerest and heartfelt sympathy goes out to Henry, Kevin and the rest of the family'

Funeral arrangements have been posted HERE

Published in DBSC
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Dublin Bay Sailing Club (DBSC) is one of Europe's biggest yacht racing clubs. It has almost sixteen hundred elected members. It presents more than 100 perpetual trophies each season some dating back to 1884. It provides weekly racing for upwards of 360 yachts, ranging from ocean-going forty footers to small dinghies for juniors.

Undaunted by austerity and encircling gloom, Dublin Bay Sailing Club (DBSC), supported by an institutional memory of one hundred and twenty-nine years of racing and having survived two world wars, a civil war and not to mention the nineteen-thirties depression, it continues to present its racing programme year after year as a cherished Dublin sporting institution.

The DBSC formula that, over the years, has worked very well for Dun Laoghaire sailors. As ever DBSC start racing at the end of April and finish at the end of September. The current commodore is Jonathan Nicholson of the Royal St. George Yacht Club.

The character of racing remains broadly the same in recent times, with starts and finishes at Club's two committee boats, one of them DBSC's new flagship, the Freebird. The latter will also service dinghy racing on Tuesdays and Saturdays. Having more in the way of creature comfort than the John T. Biggs, it has enabled the dinghy sub-committee to attract a regular team to manage its races, very much as happened in the case of MacLir and more recently with the Spirit of the Irish. The expectation is that this will raise the quality of dinghy race management, which, operating as it did on a class quota system, had tended to suffer from a lack of continuity.

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