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Kelly Le Brock is going back to her Ulster roots

1980s pin-up has got her heart set on bringing her children over to Armagh.

By Leona O'Neill

Published 23/10/2015

Iconcic: Le Brock in 1980s sci-fi hit Weird Science.
Iconcic: Le Brock in 1980s sci-fi hit Weird Science.
She feels an affinity with Ireland: Kelly's granny was born in Keady.
1980s pin-up has got her heart set on bringing her children over to Armagh.

Eighties Hollywood siren Kelly Le Brock is planning a visit this year to the Armagh village where her granny was born.

The actress says she may even move to Ireland if she finds the right location.

"I want to come to live in Ireland, write my book and find a publisher," she says.

"It is my story. A very traumatic one of my life in Hollywood," added Kelly whose grandmother is from Keady in south Armagh.

Kelly, now 55, burst onto our screens in 1984 as the stunning Woman in Red, in a romantic comedy of the same name alongside Gene Wilder.

And in the 1985 fantasy comedy Weird Science the former model played the "perfect woman", a sexy dream girl created by two Frankenstein movie inspired High School nerds.

She later married her Hard To Kill co-star Steven Seagal and the couple had three children before a headline making divorce which she has previously described as 'ugly'.

Although Kelly quit the limelight some years ago to move to a sprawling ranch in Santa Barbara, California with her children, she hasn't given up acting.

During her interview with Sunday Life she revealed she's just landed a role in the American version of the Channel 4 hit Shameless.

The star, talks proudly of her Irish roots and is keen to do continue researching her family tree when she visits later this year.

"My mother Maria used to introduce herself to everyone by saying,'I am Maria, I am 100 per cent Irish, I have no other blood'," she told Sunday Life.

"My first name is Kelly. I was named after my grandmother Mary Helen Kelly from Keady in Co Armagh.

"She was brought up there and married a man called John Traynor.

"I'm sure I have relatives still living there, I must. I don't really feel American. My dream would be to get an Irish passport, honestly."

The actress was born in New York but brought up in the posh Kensington area of London.

Her mother Maria Traynor - a former model herself - raised her and her brother Henry with a strong sense of Irish identity and hired a Northern Irish nanny to help her with the children when they were young. Her dad Henry Le Brock was a successful New York businessman.

"When we were young we had a nanny called Mary," says Kelly.

"She was a lovely woman from Strabane in Co Tyrone. We loved her. We loved her so much I flew her over to California when my children were young to look after them. I am still in contact with her.

"I feel very Irish, I always have. I have such an affinity with Ireland.

"I love a bit of a drink - I drank Guinness religiously when I was nursing my children as it is full of B12 - and I love the rain, which is great because it tends to rain quite a bit in Ireland.

"I definitely have Irish hands. I love to make things, I grow my own vegetables and I slaughter my own animals for meat here on my ranch. I am an advocate for healthier eating and living. My favourite meal to cook is Irish stew.

"I use my deer that I slaughter here on the ranch. I love to cook for my children and am very at home at the stove, another Irish trait.

"I raise everything from pigs to chickens here on 700 acres. I pluck her own chicken and milk my goats, all for the sake of organic living. Probably a mirror image of my grandmother's life in Armagh. I haven't had a television for 22 years."

The veteran film star says she has visited Ireland before but has never ventured into the north.

"I have been to Ireland before. My aunt is a nun and I visited her when she was celebrating her 50th anniversary of being married to Christ. I visited Dublin. There was a party with the other nuns. We drank a lot of Guinness and danced and laughed. It was amazing.

"I want to come back and find my roots in Armagh this time.

"I want to bring my children and show them were they came from. My mother, who died six years ago, had a wicked Irish sense of humour that I think I have inherited too. My Irish roots have kept me alive all these years, of that I have no doubt.

"When I have been at my lowest point that Irish blood has given me courage. There is a strength in the Irish people, a resilience within us that keeps us going, no matter what life throws at us. I know the name Kelly means warrior, I try to live up to that name every day."

Online Editors

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