Thursday, March 17, 2011

Eileen Dugan: The Most Famous Irish Carroll Gardener

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Remembering Carroll Gardens' most famous Irish Person on St. Patrick's Day

My husband and I just looked through some older photographs taken in Carroll Park during the 1980's and 1990's. We came across this gem of our friend Peri painting Eileen Dugan's face during one of the Friends of Carroll Park's famous Halloween parties.

For those who don't know or don't remember her, Eileen Dugan was our New York State Assemblywoman from 1980 to 1996. She won an astounding ninth term representing this district . Unfortunately, in 1996, she passed away of breast cancer at the age of 51 just days after the election of that last term.

Eileen was a Carroll Gardens native of Irish decent. She was born with politics in her blood. She was a remarkable woman, tough as nails, but exceedingly fair. She would do anything for the neighborhood in which she lived her entire life.

In 1999, Smith Street between 9th Street and Atlantic Avenue was renamed " Eileen C. Dugan Boulevard" to honor her. And each fall, the
Eileen Dugan Memorial Run is held to raise money for breast cancer research.

This St. Patrick's Day, here is to you, Eileen!

Does anyone have any stories about Eileen that they want to share? Comment away...


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4 comments:

Gatemouth said...

1) Even on her death bed, she insisted on personally doing the seating chart at the 1996 IND dinner, and at that dinner, she gave her own eulogy.

2) She told me she went to Congressman John Rooney's funeral and then traveled to the cemetery, just to make sure he was dead

Joe said...

Thanks for the beautiful article and for remembering my Aunt Ei. I don't know who Gatemouth is but it's clear that he/she knew her well.

She was one-of -a kind. She loved the neighborhood.

Katia said...

Hi Gatemouth,
Thanks for the mention on you blog and for your memories of Eileen. Most of our current politicians don't have the guts this lady had.
And yes, she loved our neighborhood.

Katia said...

Hi Joe,
Thanks for writing in. Your Aunt Ei is still missed by so many.
So often, neighborhood discussions end with a mention of her. "This would never have happened during Eileen's days." is something I hear very often.