Veronica Dunne

Veronica Dunne, a talented young singer from Dublin, was introduced to the Monsignor for the first time in Kildare in Ireland in August of 1946.

The Kiernans were on holidays in Ireland and were invited to lunch by a Fr Campion with the Monsignor. Veronica came along with her mother and was invited to perform for the guests and in particular for Delia Murphy, who was a renowned singer herself.

It was agreed that she was very talented and that she should go to Rome for training under the guardianship of the Monsignor.

The Monsignor collected her at the airport in September of 1946 and immediately set her straight "see that plane, there? If I see you with any of those Italian men you will be going straight back"

The Monsignor took Veronica under his wing, showed her the sights and met with her regularly in Rome. She got to know him very well and became very worried about his health as he ate very poorly and irregularly. She also recalls him becoming very disillusioned with the politics he experienced in the Vatican. He commented to her on a few occasions that politics were worse there than anywhere else. She detected that there was a lot of jealousy among some in the Vatican arising from his fame and popularity in Rome.

On one of the Monsignors only visits to the Ardeatine Caves after liberation she accompanied him and recalls his tears as they knelt on the floor of the caves and together recited the Rosary for those who had been murdered.

A true hero: Monsignor Hugh O'Flahery - In the words of Veronica Dunne

The Veronica Dunne International Singing Competition was established in 1992 as the realization of a dream. The dream of a dedicated, talented woman affectionately known as Ronnie to one and all in the music world of Dublin.