Johanna Guiry also known as Josie was born in Ballybrien Ballymacarbry in 1905, to parent Michael and Kate Geary. The family included Josie and her two brothers Lawrence and John Guiry. Josie was awarded the 'Services Medal 1917 - 1921' for her service with the Ballymacarbry Cumann na mBan during the War of Independence.
Josie was involved with dispatches, providing food, shelter and repairs to local volunteers and volunteers on the run for the 7th Battalion, West Waterford Brigade. She worked as a seamstress and her skills were much in demand in the Cumann na mBan. Once she had received the Services Medal she was eligible to apply for a military pension for her services. The application was successful due to her work and efforts during the War of Independence.
Josie met and later married local Volunteer John Connolly of Ballymacarbry. The couple lived in Castlequater, Ballymacarbry, where they raised their family and lived for the rest of their lives. They never forgot their comrades from this period and attended the commemoration events wearing their service medals with pride.
Source: Guiry/O'Sullivan Family Ballymacarbry
Author: Chrissy O'Connor Knight & Eddie Cantwell