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Hundreds turn out for funeral of Polish man who died alone on in County Clare Christmas Day


RevokeNice 15 | 1,859
11 Jan 2016 #1
OVER 300 PEOPLE are said to have turned out for the funeral today of a Polish man who died alone in Ennis, Co Clare.

Cyril Cusack, an undertaker in Ennis, had offered to look after the funeral for the 51-year-old man, who died in his flat on Christmas Day. When he heard the man's story being told on Liveline by local woman Josie O'Brien, comedian Brendan O'Carroll phoned in to offer to pay for the funeral.

thejournal.ie/funeral-polish-man-cyril-cusack-2542557-Jan2016/

The media did not name him as his family have yet to be contacted. Very sad story but at least he got a decent send off in the end. RIP.
Atch 17 | 3,264
12 Jan 2016 #2
A sad story and a beautiful story at the same time. A local choir performed at the funeral, a Garda escort accompanied his remains to the burial site and two musicians followed the coffin up to Drumcliffe graveyard. This is the Irish at their best and what makes Ireland such a special and truly unique place. "Ar dheis Dé do raibh a anam" (may his soul be at the right hand of God).
dolnoslask
12 Jan 2016 #3
Touching thank you Ireland.
Ironside 49 | 10,447
12 Jan 2016 #4
That was awful nice of them.
welshguyinpola 23 | 463
12 Jan 2016 #5
Pity noone wanted to know him when he was alive
Atch 17 | 3,264
12 Jan 2016 #6
We don't know that do we? There's no suggestion that he was shunned by the Irish community during his lifetime and what about the Polish community in Ennis, many of whom apparently attended his funeral? On Christmas Day he had attended a Christmas dinner organised by a local Irish man for those in need so clearly he was at least being assisted by the community on some level. How come it appears that he wasn't invited by a Polish family or even another Polish individual to join their celebrations? The sad truth is that many of us aren't aware of a person in our midst who is in need or lonely.
Crow 139 | 8,272
12 Jan 2016 #7
they should give him while he was alive.
Atch 17 | 3,264
13 Jan 2016 #8
Not wanting to make an issue of this, but here are the facts. His name was Marek Skiba and he had worked in Co Cork but was an alcoholic and had fallen on hard times and ended up homeless. He was befriended by an Irish woman ( a platonic friendship it seems) whom he described as an angel who came to his assistance and at the time of his death he was living in an apartment. He was not friendless and was not ill-treated by the Irish. He was merely a single man living in straitened circumstances, there are many Irish men in a similar situation. The undertaker who heard of his case offered to provide the funeral because of the old Irish adage 'leave no-one above ground' and felt it was the morally right thing to do. Why is a gesture of kindness being twisted here to seem like the opposite? Is there no end to the cynicism and nastiness on this forum? And once again I ask, where was the Polish community in Ennis during all this? Did they have a whip round to pay for this man's funeral? No,they didn't. Speaks volumes really.
OP RevokeNice 15 | 1,859
15 Jan 2016 #9
I agree. We should.look after those that live here send have problems please
rozumiemnic 8 | 3,781
15 Jan 2016 #10
that is the Irish people at their best IMO. I doubt v much he was 'shunned' when alive. perhaps the good people of Ennis (of whom I am personally aquainted with several..:) remember how things might have been for single working men of their own diaspora washed up in eg London or New York.

It seems a pity to twist it.
Ironside 49 | 10,447
15 Jan 2016 #11
And once again I ask, where was the Polish community in Ennis during all this? Did they have a whip round to pay for this man's funeral?

Because there are always people on the internet and in life that are bitter or like to twist something good to look worse. The point is that in this thread it was done by a bitter Welsh dude in Poland and by Serbian from Serbia.

I congratulate you cause you joined voluntarily into ranks of bitter and sad people pointing fingers on others.
What Polish community? If there is one, then people they didn't know that dude and other Poles he might know would be associating with an alcoholic whom they are not related to or whom them hardly know.

That is the way it works with Poles and you shouldn't judge. Every society has their own way, eh?

that is the Irish people at their best IMO

Yes, awfully decent of them
jon357 63 | 15,107
15 Jan 2016 #12
Basically we are making a lot of guesses here and don't know the full story. We don't know what he was like in real life, we don't know about the people around him and we don't know about the circumstances and the involvement of statutory or voluntary agencies.

What we do know is that he was receiving some sort of support and that 300 people turned out for his funeral. That's all.
Atch 17 | 3,264
15 Jan 2016 #13
What Polish community?

But they attended his funeral Ironside. Ennis is a small town and he would have been known to other members of the Polish community. The word would have been out locally that he had died within days of his demise and it would have been known locally that his remains were still in the morgue because he had no family and nobody to take responsibility for his funeral. The Polish community did not step forward at that point because it's not the Polish way. My observations of Polish society from living there are that people care very little for the greater good or for those outside their immediate family or intimate circle. If this man had died in his own home town, I'm willing to bet that he wouldn't have had the funeral he was given by the people of Ennis. As a matter of interest he is buried very close to a Polish friend of his who died a couple of years ago. They had lived on the streets together when both of them were homeless.

an alcoholic whom they are not related to or whom them hardly know.

Yet they, the Polish, are his 'people' and the Irish, foreigners, who are in the same position of hardly knowing him have the respect, generosity and compassion to give him what the undertaker referred to as 'a dignified burial'.

We don't know what he was like in real life

We do know that the people who spoke at his funeral and who knew him spoke well of him. He was described as 'a soft soul' and 'lovely'.
dolnoslask
15 Jan 2016 #14
Atch "care very little for the greater good or for those outside their immediate family or intimate circle." Interesting that you say this, and i myself have noticed this among st some polish people.

Believe me this was not the case in old Poland, my father used to tell me how if a neighbors crops failed others would step in and share what they had.

But I have not lost faith with my people A family down the road lost their roof and many possessions that they had due to a chimney fire, the community stepped in and gave them materials and money raised from a barbecue to rebuild. My neighbor who did not know them runs his own window business, he went down measured up and bought them a complete set of new windows.

But i think that alcoholics are not treated with any kind of sympathy in Poland , mostly people shy away from them, otherwise the get hassled for money to buy them more vodka.
Atch 17 | 3,264
15 Jan 2016 #15
Believe me this was not the case in old Poland, my father used to tell me how if a neighbors crops failed others would step in and share what they had.

Absolutely Dolnoslask. In my humble view, this is a result of Communism and the purging of old Polish society and undermining of traditional Polish culture.
dolnoslask
15 Jan 2016 #16
Atch " a result of Communism " I did wonder and I was tempted to say this in my last post, communism set out to divide people and families, they would set brother to spy on brother (Divide and conquer) my uncle in Warsaw explained this to me.

But there is no excuse for that type of behavior today.
Ironside 49 | 10,447
15 Jan 2016 #17
and the Irish, foreigners, who are in the same position of hardly knowing him have the respect, generosity and compassion to give him what the undertaker referred to as 'a dignified burial'.

OK, has someone argued otherwise? I have only said that because of two bitter comments, one made by a Serb and other by a Welsh dude you jumped on that opportunity and your high horse to beret Polish community or whatnot.

But i think that alcoholics are not treated with any kind of sympathy in Poland , mostly people shy away from them, otherwise the get hassled for money to buy them more vodka

Indeed if you are kind to them you get pestered by them.
OP RevokeNice 15 | 1,859
16 Jan 2016 #18
Ennis, Co. Clare today, London, UK for us. Guys that emigrate rarely ask their families for help when things go wrong. When working, they send money home. When let go and need a bit of help, they still send whatever they can.

There are hundreds of Irish men homeless in London. There are a lot of Polish guys now homeless in Ireland. We need to help them.
Roger5 1 | 1,458
16 Jan 2016 #19
I worked with a lot of Irish guys on the Canary Wharf site years ago. They earned terrific money and sent loads back home, but in the evenings the choice was between sitting in a caravan (they were not travellers) or sitting in the pub. Drink got the better of many a good man, and it is no doubt the same for single Poles living abroad. The people of Ennis did a good thing, and that's all that needs to be said.
Dougpol1 32 | 3,274
16 Jan 2016 #20
My observations of Polish society from living there are that people care very little for the greater good or for those outside their immediate family or intimate circle

'Fraid so. The one and only failing really. That's why communism and the idea of "The People's Republic" was a sick giggle. Poles are (stereotypically) the most insular and ungenerous people you will ever meet. (But fantastic and true friends to those they know)

Except that when my car broke down with my nipper inside on a boiling day the one and only mechanic for 50 kilometres around left his family Sunday lunch on the table to drive out and tow my car to his workshop, and patch it up.

So a stereotype is all it is.

Not even the bees work in the UK and Ireland on a Sunday :)
InPolska 11 | 1,821
16 Jan 2016 #21
@Atch: absolutely true re lack of solidarity of Poles for out of their family circles! A lot of Poles who know western countries very well told me that in the west, people have more solidarity towards others. In western Europe we show more and often a lot of solidarity towards others but I believe that in the US (where I have lived so I know, I don't need to rely on YouTube ;)); it is even more so and people help each other a lot... Right now, in my buidling we have lived without water for more than 3 days now and NO one from other buildings have offered us some water, to use their shower..... in western countries, a lot of people would have reacted.

As to what happened in Ireland, it could have happened in any other western country.
TheOther 6 | 3,818
16 Jan 2016 #22
in the US (where I have lived so I know, I don't need to rely on YouTube ;)); it is even more so and people help each other a lot.

It used to be like that, but the "Me, myself and I generation" is taking over now and that sense of community is slowly disappearing in many places across the country.
InPolska 11 | 1,821
17 Jan 2016 #23
@TheOther: it's very unfortunate! I remember some 25/30 years ago, when I was in school and then later on lived there, people were really helpful and concerned about each other. Sad it is no longer this way...
Crow 139 | 8,272
17 Jan 2016 #24
Do you know that, by some people, Marek Skiba eventually was Jesus Christ himself who resurrected and came to save us all, again. i mean ALL. Whites and Blacks and Yellow, all. So that we kissing each others while some wise rule us because we are all stupid and evil.

By some others, Marek Skiba was actually some Slavic deity who wanted to save only himself, eventually other Slavs and maybe some other people who suited him.

Just for the record when we are at topic
PISwelldone
17 Jan 2016 #25
Shows the generosity of the Irish to their community, even though he was Polish he was still part of the community. It would be a good social experiment if the Polish media took this story up.Sense of community does not exist in Poland,it's about family and that is the point it ends. More community less nationalism would be a good starting point?We all have a responsibility to our community it is not just palace we communicate to and from. Support your local shops, it may b the only place for the elderly to have a form of interaction.
Atch 17 | 3,264
17 Jan 2016 #26
As to what happened in Ireland, it could have happened in any other western country.

Not so sure about that. His remains would probably be dealt with by the local authority in an efficient and respectful manner but there would be no bells and whistles, probably a cremation as burial plots are at a premium and I don't think you'd see the genuine sentiment, the funeral mass with choir, poetic speeches and musicians at the grave side. That's very much part of the old Bardic tradition of Gaelic Ireland.

And the Irish are still very quick to make spontaneous gestures of kindness to a stranger which you don't see so much nowadays in developed societies.

Support your local shops, it may b the only place for the elderly to have a form of interaction.

Well said.
rozumiemnic 8 | 3,781
18 Jan 2016 #27
As to what happened in Ireland, it could have happened in any other western country.

hmmm I am really not sure about that either tbh InPolska...
welcome back by the way..:)
InPolska 11 | 1,821
18 Jan 2016 #28
@Rozu and Atch: come on! We can read re similar cases in any medium (Pol3: I know that singlular of "media" is medium ;)) at least several times a month as they happen in any country. Nothing special re the situation in Ireland and that is the reason why it did not do the world's headlines ;). In crappy sites such as Yahoo, it is quite common to read about something like that.

However, what strikes me is that (most) people don't give a d... about people when they are alive. I am not talking about Irish people but about people in general. People are the same everywhere, no country has the best or the worst population ;).


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