Frank Darcy (1919 - 2013)
Frank Darcy was born May 21, 1919 in Providence, RI. Frank's parents Peter & Ellen Darcy returned to their native home in Aughnasheelin, Ballinamore, Co. Leitrim, Ireland, where they raised Frank and his 3 brothers and 5 sisters.
Frank was educated in the National School and Irish Christian Brothers School. He was an excellent student and outstanding athlete in Gaelic Football.
As a very young man, Frank soon learned the politics of Ireland. He became an Irish Republican and a fervent Sinn Fein advocate. He knew there was only one Ireland, never two.
Frank returned to America in 1939. He settled in Providence RI where many of his aunts and uncles lived. His Uncle helped him to get a job in Brown & Sharp Tool Co. Putting his job on the line, Frank was instrumental in the unionization of 20,000 of his co-workers into the International Association of Machinist Union Local 1142
Frank married Catherine Morley and moved to New Jersey for better wages and conditions. They had two sons and three daughters, 18 Grandchildren, 33 Great Grandchildren & one Great-Great Grandchild.
Frank carried his strong union beliefs to New Jersey. He secured his first job in Gould & Eberhardt Co. as a machinist; joining Local 340 LAM Frank soon became shop steward in that Company. Then ascending to the Executive Board, Treasurer, Vice President & for the next 36 years he served as their President. Frank was also Chair of their Political Action Committee. He was a Delegate & Executive Board Member of lAM District#15 NY, Vice President of the NJ State Council of Machinist. In 1960 he was elected to be a Representative at the National Convention and has served every year since. He has been a delegate to the
state AFL-CIO Legislative Conference for 40 years & served as an officer in the Essex Co. Democratic Organization.
Frank also served on the Machine Trades Review Committee for the Essex County Vocational Schools, the Rutgers Labor Center Trade Union Consulting Committee, the Botto House American Labor Museum Advisory Council and as President of the Essex County College Labor Advisory Committee. He served as a Trustee of the United Way of Essex & West Hudson Counties. Frank served on the Essex County Vocation School Board from 1966 to 1970. Frank was coordinator of the Essex County Labor Resource Center. He also served as the President of the Essex West Hudson Central Labor Council AFL-CIO for 10 years. Frank received an Honorary Associates Bachelor of Science Degree from the Essex County College in 1987.
Frank in his journey to the United States, according to the ship's register, was deported to the U.S. He was supposed to be held in a cell until the ship reached international waters. However, because of the English guard's attitude Frank threw a cup of hot cocoa in his face. Frank was in for the week.
Frank Darcy never forgot his
Irish Politics. When IRA or Sinn Fein were mentioned, Frank
stood head & shoulders above the rest. He was vocal &
militant. An active member and treasurer of Irish Northern
Aid, United Irish Counties, Clan na Gael, Irish Unity, the
old G.AA of Newark, treasurer of the Friends of the IRA,
member of the Irish American Society of the Oranges, founding member of the West Orange St. Patrick's Day Parade. Member of the McGovern Assoc. and the Cryan Assoc. Frank was there with Eileen Ruane and others to start the 1916 Easter Commemoration March to St. Patrick's Cathedral for a Traditional Irish Mass. Frank associated himself with patriots like his good friend John Joe McGirl, Jimmy Joe Reynolds, Joe Reynolds, Mike Flannery and many other IRA comrades.
Frank was honored in 1965 as the Grand Marshal of the Newark St. Patrick's Day Parade.
Frank with others carried the England get out of Ireland Banner down O'Connell St, Dublin in 1976.
This was the first time the banner was carried since 1922. He had his own banner which he carried in most parades in New Jersey. He attended many vigils & rallies in New York for Joe Doherty, Michael O'Rourke and all other families ready to be deported. He is on record with his constant writing to our U.S. Congress & Senate with results. He was one of Nor Aid's best fund raisers.
He was a role model, a hero and a legend in his time. His beliefs never changed.
"Ireland unfree shall never be at peace" --- Padraig Pearse
Click HERE to view video tribute to Frank Darcy