On Tuesday 22nd October at 7p.m. in Seán Lemass Public Library, Shannon Valerie Sweeney presented Clare County Library Service with the boxed set of an eight-hour documentary series “From Foynes to Shannon”, originally aired on Clare FM in 2001 and 2002.
Valerie also presented the original photographs used in her sold-out book, “Shannon Airport – A Unique Story of Survival” to the Library. Many of these photographs have never been seen before. The collection includes pictures of stars such as Marilyn Monroe, Charlie Chaplin and Frank Sinatra at Shannon Airport. Valerie also presented Dúchas na Sionna with 37 original recorded tapes, all her research and photos of the early crashes at Shannon as well as a variety of photographs for the group’s “Social History of Shannon” project.
Over 100 guests were in attendance as Valerie spoke of her memories of the early days of Shannon airport. Former managers of Aer Rianta and Aer Rianta International, Michael Guerin and Liam Skelly were present at the event as was guest of honour Danny Ryall, aged 96 years of age, who posed for photographs beside a picture of himself as a very young man servicing an Air Corps Anson aircraft.
The evening was a huge success with speakers Carmel Daly, Executive Librarian, Helen Walsh, County Librarian, Mayor of Shannon Greg Duff and Shannon Airport's new chief executive Neil Pakie thanking Valerie for her wonderful contribution to Shannon library, Dúchas na Sionna and to the people of Shannon.