February 2006 my Dad and I made the trip to Ireland. One of our stops was
Tuam where my G-Grandfather, Patrick Judge, was born. It was a very cold day
when we arrived by bus. My Dad had forgotten his second jacket so we opted to go
into the library to get warm and look up any info on the Judge family in
relationship to the town. We were having no luck when the librarian asked us if
we found what we were looking for. We told her that we had hoped to find info on
the Judges and at that point she told us that a Michael Judge worked at the bank
across the street and that maybe he would be able to help us.
across the street we went and we were told by his secretary that he was out of
the office at a meeting but that she would relay the message and could we come
back later? So, my Dad and I walked the old area and by the small river I found
a little spot which was landscaped beautifully with a memorial plaque dedicated
to the memory of a woman who had lost her life on September 11th.
then toured the old churches and headed back to the bank. Michael was there and
greeted us warmly but indicated that he was pretty sure that we weren't related
as many people over the years had come thru looking for relations to the Judge
name and as far as he knew none of his Judges had gone to America. I told him
that my Grandfather, Vincent, had written down that his father was from this
area. At this point, I guess I peaked Michael's interest as he told us his
father's name was Vincent. I then told him where James Judge, my G-G-Grandfather
was buried with his son John and now Michael was intrigued. His g-grandfather's
name was John. I knew at this point that he was hooked and you wouldn't believe
what happened next. Michael took the rest of the day off and drove us to his
cousins house to find out more. After giving the cousin, Anna, my info, she
informed us that we were, indeed, related. That Michael's G-G-Grandfather and my
G-G-Grandfather were brothers! We were all so excited!
then drove us to the Donaghpatrick cemetery and then to his sister's home for a
meeting. I can honestly tell you that I have never met kinder or warmer people.
We visited for a couple of hours and then Michael drove us back to Galway to the
bus. Many hugs later we promised to keep in touch.
last March, my son and I spent two weeks in Ireland and 5 days with my new found
relatives. I met the rest of the Judges and their families and they treated us
grandly. It was a sad day when we had to leave. They made us feel so welcomed
and a part of the family. The Irish are a special people and I count myself
lucky to have their blood in me.
that's my story. I just wanted to share it. Thanks.