Wednesday, January 18, 2017

CARLOW soldiers are flying the flag for the county in Lebanon.

Navy Lieutenant Grace Fanning and Lieut Darragh McNally both from Carlow showed their county pride with this shot taken at their camp.

The flag was dispatched from Carlow all the way to the Middle East by Lieut Fanning’s own mother Mary.

Carlow’s Leut Grace Fanning and Leut Darragh McNally in the Lebanon.

The pair are just two of the 336 Irish soldiers currently deployed in the 109th Infantry Battalion as part of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL).

Lieut Fanning’s wife Carol said the Ballon woman was relishing the Lebanon experience.

“It’s a whole different environment but she is enjoying it. She always wanted to go overseas ever since I’ve known her. Since she’s joined the defence forces, if the opportunity came up she would take it,” she said.

A visit to a local orphanage was particularly memorable for Lieut Fanning. The Co Carlow native has served in the defence forces for 15 years and is the daughter of John and Mary from Aghade, Ballon.

Lieut McNally is the son of Larry and Maura from Askea.

A past pupil of the Gaelscoil and Gaelcholáiste Cheatharlach, Lieut McNally has served in the defence forces for around five years after completing an engineering degree in UCD.

In addition to the county flag, another item was also in demand by Lieut Fanning.

“One of the things she wanted was tea bags,” said Carol, a nurse from Cahore, Co Wexford. “She bought tea bags with her and all she wanted was more teabags. She drinks it all the time!”

With friends and family sending out packages, Carol believed her wife wouldn’t go thirsty.

“I think she has a good stockpile at the moment!”

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By Michael Tracey
Contact Newsdesk: +353 59 9170100

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