On Tuesday, 5 June, two members of Youghal RNLI were invited to Buckingham Palace to attend the Queen's famous summer Garden Party. The event is synonymous with recognising and honouring people from all walks of life who have dedicated their lives to voluntary service, and how that service has impacted on the local community.
Husband and wife, Seamus and Susan Mason, have been volunteers in the Youghal RNLI for over 30 years. Seamus is the former station mechanic and his wife, Susan, is Secretary of the Youghal branch.
RNLI Area Lifesaving Manager, Joe Moore, nominated Seamus for the invitation, acknowledging his devotion to service to saving lives at sea for 30 years. The Royal appointment was a momentous day for Seamus and Susan and all the crew and staff at the Youghal RNLI and, indeed, for the entire town. Countrywide, the RNLI deserve all the recognition, commendation and fundraising donations which it receives, and more besides.
The event took place between 4-6pm for the assembled guests of the Queen and Royal family, with tea and refreshments served in the various Royal and diplomatic tents. Two military bands played alternately through the afternoon, and announced the arrival of the Royal hosts with the English National Anthem at 4pm.
There is no price on lives saved at sea, and no wage suitable for those that risk their own lives to do so, let alone giving so much of their free time to training and courses. In Seamus’s tenure at the RNLI, the station has been credited with 59 lives saved. Youghal's location, of course, has meant there have been people making a livelihood from the sea and it will always be active as a haven for maritime leisure use. The presence of such a competent, respected Lifeboat crew has always been a necessity, and the townspeople recognise that in their admiration, respect and donations over the last 165 years.
Congratulations and thank you to both Séamus and Susan for all your voluntary work and commitment to saving lives at sea in the beautiful town of Youghal and all over the surrounding areas.