A first look at the late Keelin Shanley’s memoir ‘A Light That Never Goes Out’

Keelin Shanley by City Headshots Dublin

Before Keelin Shanley, award-winning journalist and broadcaster for RTÉ, sadly passed away earlier this year, she wrote a memoir, A Light That Never Goes Out, and it is to be published by Gill Books on 2nd October 2020. Now, the first look of the memoir is here.

In the introduction of the book, Keelin documents her thoughts as she came to terms with her diagnosis of breast cancer, aged just 51,I realised that I am still Keelin Shanley: I still am that person, in spite of everything. In spite of the wig, the scarves, the IV lines, the tests, mum, wife, news presenter, daughter, sister, stepdaughter – I am all of those things. And that’s why I decided to write this book: to remind me of who I am, and to leave those who love me something to hold on to.”


The title of the book is also a song by The Smyths, who was one of Keelin’s favourite bands when she first met her husband Conor Ferguson. Conor, who finished the last chapter of the book after Keelin passed away, said, “Keelin lived such an extraordinary life, she has left behind a legacy that will never be forgotten. Keelin wasn’t prone to nostalgia, she was upfront and a “doer” from the very beginning.”

He continued, “She always grabbed life by the reins and, as a result, didn’t have many regrets. Though we miss her every day and remember her in every moment, we hope that her remarkable story will inspire people to live life to the full and put the best foot forward, no matter what obstacles life presents”.

Caitríona Perry, who presented the Six One News, alongside Keelin Shanley since January 2018, also shared the news of the memoir’s arrival. Takin to Twitter, Caitríona wrote “For a couple of months before she died, Keelin Shanley was writing this book. It mattered so much to Keelin that people would read about her life, about living with cancer and could share her stories.”

She continued, “It’s out Oct 2nd. Please do put it on your reading list if you can.”

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