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 Elizabeth Ann "Betty" Tinneny

  1930 - 2009

Elizabeth Ann Tinneny was the fourth child and first daughter of Francis Tinneny and Margaret Coleman.  She was born September 12, 1930.  Betty was very frail and ill so instead of taking her to Saint Tierney's Church in Roslea to be baptized she was baptized at home.  Her godparents were her father's sister Elizabeth Tinneny Miskelley and Pat Carroll.

Photo: Betty and her sister Molly next to Father O’Brien a parish priest of Saint Tierney’s. From the photo collection, Roslea Heritage Center. 

Betty was raised in the Northern Ireland town of Roslea.  She attended Saint Tierney's Church and Primary School then went on to the Technical College in the town of Clones for her secondary schooling.  As a young girl she enjoyed knitting and dancing.  Many years later she recalled that she enjoyed visiting her cousin Mick Casey and his wife Carrie at their home in Belturbet.  Betty remembered that Mick and Carrie were very religious. She recalled that when she and her sister spent weekends at their home, the girls were awakened at 7:00a.m. Sunday mornings to go to the 8:00 a.m. Mass -- no matter how late they had been out dancing and having fun the night before. 

When she was about 16 years old Betty went to England to work.  Her Aunt Betty Tinneny (later Miskelley) brought her to London and found her a job as a parlor maid.  Then Betty worked for 1 1/2 years as a nursing orderly between 1958 and 1959 in the Hackney Hospital in the Eastland section of London.

Photo: (L to R) Pauline Smith - Luke Keenan & Betty Tinneny. From the photo collection, Roslea Heritage Center.

She returned to Roslea and took a job working in the kitchen at Saint Eugene's School in Roslea.  When she was about 18 years old Betty wanted to join the Women’s Royal Naval Service (WRNS) but her father was against it and said “Never join anything except your two hands.” Betty did not join.  After the death of her brother Jim's wife Mary, in New Zealand in 1968, Jim brought his five young children back to Roslea to raise.  Betty and her mother both helped raise the children.  Betty also cared for her mother in her last years.  She retired from Saint Eugene's after having worked there for 21 years.

Betty was in Enniskillen in 1987 to watch the parade on Remembrance Day. The annual celebration commemorated the veterans who served in World War I of which her father Francis was one.  She crossed the street to get a better look at the parade when suddenly there was a massive explosion.  The explosion was so severe that it blew down buildings, killed 11 onlookers and tore an earring out of Betty's ear.  The explosion was attributed to the IRA.  Betty's brother in England heard the news flash about the explosion and said, "I'll bet Betty is there."

In 1994 Betty was keeping busy with a part time job picking mushrooms and with her interest in old time and modern dancing.  She was a great hostess during my visit there in 1994 and provided a good deal of information about members of the Francis Tinneny and Annie Dolan of Belturbet branch of the family, which she represents.  She and her two nephews Francis and Patrick Tinneny were the first to represent their line of the Tinneny family at the reunion held at Emmon's Inn, Belturbet, Co. Cavan on September 23, 1994.  That branch had not been located or represented at the get together held in April 1992.

Photo: Betty at the front door of her home July 2009 by Richard J. Tinneny. 

Betty lived at 2 Saint Patrick's Park, Roslea, Co. Fermanagh, Northern Ireland. The weekend of November 7, 2009 she apparently had a stroke and was transported to the hospital in the town of Enniskillen where she died at approximately 11:30a.m. November 12, 2009. She was buried from the home of her nephew Patrick Tinneny and his family. Following Mass at Saint Tierney’s Catholic Church in Roslea she was buried in the church cemetery.


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