Farewell Message from Ambassador Declan Kelly
I was first posted to Canada in 1985 at which time I was the First Secretary in the Embassy. I worked
with two Ambassadors, Edward Brennan the late Sean Gaynor. Anne and I were accompanied by our
three children, Ruth, Declan and Richard all of whom attended five years of school in Canada at
It was my first overseas posting and we arrived here after my stint as Private Secretary to the then
Taoiseach, Dr. Garret Fitzgerald.
As a family we really embraced life in Canada and tried to sample as much as we could of the
Canadian experience. Among other things we skated on the Rideau Canal, skied at Camp Fortune,
brought the kids to the sugar shacks to see the maple syrup being tapped. The latter clearly had a big
impact on them as to this day they still ask us to bring them home Canadian Maple Syrup. I am
delighted to say that our three year old granddaughter, Isabelle, is the latest recruit to the Maple leaf
Some readers may recall me mentioning in speeches over the years that I bought a camper in which
one year we all travelled from Ottawa to the Rockies and the following year from Ottawa to Prince
Edward Island. Both these memorable trips left us all with abiding and happy memories of life in
Canada when we left in 1990.
Thus it was with great delight that I heard the news in 2006 that I was to be appointed Ambassador to
Canada. Anne and I were thrilled with the news that we were returning to a place which held so many
happy memories for us.
As we prepare to leave Canada, for the second time at the end of July, to take up our new posting in
Malaysia, we can again look back on four years of personal and professional fulfilment.
Because the children were not with us on this occasion Anne has been able to accompany me on my
official visits which have made the posting extra special for us both. She is, and always has been, a
great asset to me and a wonderful Ambassador in her own right for Ireland.