The Shame of Ireland

The Shame of Ireland

The Irish Times - Saturday, September 3, 2011

AN OPEN verdict was recorded yesterday at an inquest into the death of a 15-year-old girl in 1947.

Mary-Anne Boyle, who was in care in St Joseph’s home, run by the Society of the Daughters of the Heart of Mary, on Tivoli Road, Dún Laoghaire, died in St Michael’s Hospital, Dún Laoghaire on December 26th, 1947.

A death certificate had not been issued, and yesterday’s inquest had been requested by Ms Boyle’s sister so this could happen.

Denis Prior, superintendent registrar with the Health Service Executive, told Dublin County Coroner’s Court he had searched the executive’s records, both manually and electronically, for the years around 1947.

“I can find no trace of her on the register,” he said.

He had contacted St Michael’s Hospital, he added, and their records showed Ms Boyle’s discharge listed as having taken place on December 26th, 1947.

This was the date she died, but no cause of death was recorded.

A statement from Alan Massey, of Massey’s and Sons funeral homes, said the company had arranged the burial of Ms Boyle, recorded as having been aged 15½, on December 29th, 1947.

Mr Massey said in the statement Ms Boyle’s mother, Ellen Boyle, of 56 Bushy Park Road, Terenure, had signed papers for the burial.

Dublin county coroner Kieran Geraghty said for the purposes of issuing a death certificate, the cause of death would be recorded as “unascertained”. He returned an open verdict.

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