Whether it’s in the corner office or her Arlington home, Governor Maura Healey has a new picture to hang on the wall: a painting of her ancestral home in Kilgarvan, County Kerry, in Ireland.
Patrick Teahan, introduced by state Senator Marc Pacheco as a Healey relative, visited Thursday’s Senate session with a large delegation from Kerry and Cork and brought along the painting as a gift for his cousin.
“When we first heard that the governor had Kilgarvan connections, and the Healey name came out, basically there was about 10 Healey families I would have known in the parish,” Teahan told the News Service, “and I said, ‘Which one of those families is it?’”
Various splinters of a family name “might have certain ways of distinguishing them,” he explained, and with the governor’s family, the key was the Irish name Diarmaid — often spelled Jeremiah in English. The governor’s father, grandfather, and great-grandfather all bore the name Jeremiah, he said, and possibly even her great-great-grandfather.
“We narrowed it down,” said Teahan, adding that the governor’s family were second cousins of his father’s. And while that “sounds like a long ways,” he said, “50 or 100 years ago, it was the same family tree.”
The house — a simple stone house with a red door, depicted in a partially overgrown state —still stands today.
“We took a picture of it, the artist painted it. Her grand-uncle would have lived in that house and died a bachelor farmer. And basically it has been derelict since the early ‘70s. And, you know, it’s not bad for a house derelict. The roof is on it still,” Teahan said.
Pacheco, who presided over Thursday’s emerald-tinted session and joked he should be an “O’Pachec” for the day, promised to pass along the picture to the governor.