My whole family are behind Mary, reveals Ballyfermot neighbour Joe
PROUD: Broadcaster Duffy's mum and sister shop at singer's Tescos
Joe Duffy's Ballyfermot pride is at an all-time high, thanks to X Factor sensation Mary Byrne. The broadcaster and the singer are both from the same area of Dublin and the same generation.
"My whole family are behind Mary," said Joe. "We're all rooting for her."
The RTE presenter sent Mary 'get well' texts when she was not feeling well and has sent messages of support and encouragement.
"Myself and the kids went over to my mother's house in Ballyfermot to watch the show on Sunday night," he told the Herald.
His mother Mabel (82) has been an avid follower of Mary's fortunes in the competition and has been as nervous as all of Mary's fans at judging time, he indicated.
Mabel and Joe's sister Pauline both know Mary well from shopping regularly at Tescos.
Said Joe: "My cousin is the manager of Tescos in Ballyfermot. The customers have always loved Mary. She has worked the Express checkout and several customers used to split their groceries into two handbaskets just so they could be checked out by Mary. That's because she's always given people a bit of a lift."
Mary (50) has made the whole of Ballyfermot very proud, he said.
"Mary is the best thing that has happened this year. She's the best musical talent to come out of Ballyfermot since Finbar, Eddie, and George Furey. She's brilliant," said Joe.
He said Mary and her brother Tommy had great local success performing in the pubs of Ballyfermot and his sister Pauline became a very big fan of hers.
"Mary's a great trouper. A real tonic for us all," he added.
Mary's performance of It's A Man's World received the loudest and longest ovation of the night from the studio audience at the show.
X Factor judge and mentor Louis Walsh said Mary was "the one to beat" on the televised talent show. "She gives it everything she's got and more. I know I can have complete confidence in her when she goes on stage."
He added: "The Tesco lady from Dublin has become a diva."
Judge Dannii Minogue said Mary had delivered "one of the best vocal performances on the show. It would be an absolute crime if you went back to your day job".