Managing Editor, Molly Cantwell, and Investigative Reporter, Síofra Grant, honoured the late Limerick Voice Editor-In-Chief at the award ceremony in Trinity College Dublin.
Limerick Voice took home three awards at the Student Publication Association Regional Awards on February 2, where tributes were paid to the team’s late Editor in Chief Joe Drennan.
Honouring Joe Drennan – Limerick Voice Managing Editor, Molly Cantwell, and Investigative Reporter Síofra Grant read a tribute to their late colleague and friend.
Joe’s tragic death on October 13, 2023 leaves the team heart broken, yet Limerick Voice continues our work in his honour.
Molly described her late co-editor as a “pioneer for student media,” saying it would be impossible to let the awards go by without sharing his incredible vision and career. Cantwell said: “There are no words to describe the incredible sense of loss that Joe leaves behind.
“As a group of young journalists, you never expect to become the story, to read an article that’s about the loss of your dear friend, or to be lost for words when it’s words that brought us all together. Joe was a force to be reckoned with, his passion, talent, charisma and absolute grá for his work was so evident in absolutely everything he did.”
Cantwell added: “He was passionate about his work with Gay Community News (GCN), and so determined to build a powerful future for himself. We knew there was no doubt coming out of our degree that he would’ve been the one that got the job straight away. He would walk into anything with a strut and a hairflip and he was ready to go.”
Finishing with a promise to “stay fighting the good fight for every under-represented voice as Joe would’ve wanted,” Molly turned to Síofra to contribute with the tribute.
Joe’s best friend Síofra said that Drennan was the brightest person she had ever “had the honour of knowing and the greatest friend anyone could ask for.”
“He tackled everything he put his mind to with pure determination and unflinching confidence, whether this be his writing or his relationships with others. Anyone who knew or even met our Joe came away with something to remember, something impactful,” she continued.
“He had this same attitude when it came to his journalism: no story was too small and no story was too big, and most importantly, no story was too challenging. Joey had a knack for finding the most interesting things to write about, whether it be the furry community or BDSM, an LGBTQ priest at the height of the AIDS crisis in New York, and same-sex couples in Ireland fighting for parental rights.
“I had the honour of calling him my best friend, and losing him can only be described as losing a part of myself,” the young journalist concluded.
Trinity College Dublin’s Graduate Memorial Building (GMB) erupted in applause for the pair, as well as the entire Limerick Voice team for their dedication to Joe’s dreams for the paper.
Co-hosted by Trinity News, the awards saw Limerick Voice win ‘Best Digital’ for their online and social media presence. Managing Editor Molly Cantwell received highly commended in the ‘Outstanding Commitment’ category for her dedication to the publication, while investigative reporter Gemma Good won ‘Best Article’ for her piece covering Limerick Treaty Suicide Prevention’s work.
Read more about the awards: here.