On October 3rd Ambassador Breifne O’Reilly hosted a reception at the Zunfthaus sur Saffran in Zurich together with Enterprise Ireland to coincide with Minister Pat Breen’s (Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection) visit. During the reception the 10 year anniversary of the IBN Switzerland was acknowledged, with particular focus on the contribution it’s made to the Irish business community and Valerie’s vision in founding it. Valerie gave an inspiring speech recounting both the foundation of the IBN and some of the memorable events over the years. She was presented with a gift to show our gratitude for all that she has done for the Network. Valerie particularly enjoyed chatting with so many friends and colleagues that evening.
Sadly, Valerie passed away on November 12 2018. Several of us joined her family, neighbours and friends for a beautiful funeral service with eulogies celebrating her extremely vibrant personal and professional life. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a hanam dílis.
Valerie touched everyone she met with her infectious enthusiasm, boundless positive energy, sparkling wit and huge heart. She was a constant bright and supportive presence and is greatly missed by her huge circle of friends in the Network.
Text: Bridget Mullahy & Brigid O’Donovan, Image: Geraldine O’Grady, October 2018