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Perpetua (“Petchie”) Nash (1917–2008)

Nlresize Henry Power
Petchie Nash watches from the sidelines as Henry Power (one of Anthony and Mary Power’s sons) dances "a few scuffs" in the Roche household. From left to right: Keith Roche, Paula Manore (née Roche), Mary Jean Lyth (née Roche), Dermot Roche, Petchie Nash, Jerry Power. Three girls sit in the background of the photo (left to right): Karen Sarro (née Roche), Michelle d'Entremont, Audrey Wilson (née Roche) (photo courtesy of Aidan O’Hara; used with permission).

Born in Branch on 15 December 1917, Petchie Nash (née Roche) grew up in a house that was full of music. Her mother, Mary Ellen Roche, frequently played the accordion at local events, and singing songs at bedtime was a regular part of the household routine for Petchie and her siblings.

As a young woman, Petchie married Leo Nash; they had three sons and three daughters.

She continued to sing throughout her life, joining in at house parties and appearing in local concerts. For her last public performance, Petchie’s daughter, granddaughter, and great-granddaughter joined her on stage to sing Petchie’s favourite song, “I’ll be all smiles tonight.” Petchie passed away on 29 April 2008, exactly 40 years after her husband.

Petchie Nash
Petchie Nash in her kitchen with a potato masher that came from Ireland (photo courtesy of Phyllis Nash; used with permission).
Petchie Nash

Petchie Nash in her kitchen with a potato masher that came from Ireland (photo courtesy of Phyllis Nash; used with permission).

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Only a face in the firelight / Petchie Nash & Frankie Nash

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Only a face in the firelight / Petchie Nash & Frankie Nash

Only a face in the firelight, song (I was seated one night by the hearthstone ...) Written by American composer Charles Shackford, this song was recorded by tenor James McCool in 1904 (Victor 2732). This sentimental song describes someone dreaming of a deceased lover while slumbering by a fireside.


Biographical Information

Courtesy of Bernadine Brennan