Moira Hoey  was an Irish actress. She starred as Mary Riordan in The Riordans from 1965 until it was axed in 1979, before appearing as Nellie Connors in Glenroe died she was , 88. Mary Riordan was considered “the quintessential Irish mammy” – Irish Independent / The Irish Times. She played Mrs Coffey in The Irish R.M. She had roles in This Is My Father and Angela’s Ashes (as moneylender Mrs Purcell) as well.
(née Deady; 1922 — 15 November 2010)
Hoey came from County Cork. She resided in Greystones, County Wicklow. She began acting by travelling around Ireland as part of fit-ups (travelling theatre troupes) and this contributed to her early fame. Deady married fellow actor Johnny Hoey (Franice Maher in The Riordans). He predeceased her, though three daughters and one son were still alive at the time of her own death in 2010. Fans often thought she was married to John Cowley who played Tom Riordan, her husband in The Riordans, and fans were also upset when seeing her with Johnny Hoey, her real-life husband.
She died at the age of 88 on 15 November 2010 in Loughlinstown Hospital, County Dublin. Minister for Tourism, Culture and Sport Mary Hanafin commented on her part in Irish history: “In her role as the matriarch of The Riordans homestead, she was ever present, each Sunday, on our television screens dealing with the changing landscape and domestic issues that Ireland as a country was experiencing”. John Boland, writing in the Irish Independent, called her “everyone’s mammy and the conscience of a nation” while reflecting that this meant all the senior cast members of The Riordans were now dead. Hundreds of people attended her funeral on 18 November at Holy Rosary Church, Greystones.
In 2009 she reunited with other cast members of The Riordans for an RTÉ documentary on the programme.
- The Riordans – Mary Riordan
- Bracken – ?
- Glenroe – Nellie Connors
- The Irish R.M. – Mrs Coffey
- Legend – ?
- This Is My Father – Mrs Kearney
- Angela’s Ashes – Mrs Purcell
- Headrush – Mrs Macroom
- The Tiger’s Tail – Liam’s mother, Maeve
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