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Death of Former Taoiseach: Expressions of Sympathy (Continued)

Thursday, 5 October 2017

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 959 No. 8

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(Speaker Continuing)

[Deputy Seán Barrett: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett] It was all of the simple things and he would do it, even though he was very busy as Taoiseach. To me, that is what public representation is all about. I hope his type will never be lost in politics. As others said, he will be a great loss to his daughter, Mary, who looked after him exceptionally well, and his two sons, Liam T. and Ciarán. I have no doubt that he is enjoying his time up above discussing our problems here. May he rest in peace.

Minister of State at the Department of Education and Skills (Deputy Mary Mitchell O'Connor): Information on Mary Mitchell O'Connor Zoom on Mary Mitchell O'Connor Tá brón ó chroí tagtha orm faoi bhás Liam Cosgrave. D'fhóin sé d'Éirinn go dúthrachtach agus go tírghrách agus tharraing sé gradam mór air féin as an tseirbhís sin. Duine uasal onórach ab ea é. Inniu tá na meáin lán le moladh ina thaobh. Duine na linne ina mhair sé ab ea Liam Cosgrave agus duine ar thit oidhreacht phearsanta agus oidhreacht pholaitiúil a bhí iontach ar fad air. Mar aon lena oilteachtaí féin, bhain sé feidhm as an oidhreacht seo chun cabhrú lena thír, le hinstitiúidí na tíre, le pobal na tíre agus le daonlathas na tíre. Aithním an tábhacht a bhaineann lenár stair. Baineann an tábhacht chéanna leis an áit as a dtagaimid agus as an áit ar a mbímid ag triall. Toghadh mé den chéad uair go Dáil Éireann sa bhliain 2011 chun ionadaíocht a dhéanamh do Dhún Laoghaire. Bhí thart ar 30 bliain caite ó ndeachaigh Liam Cosgrave ar scor ón bpost céanna. Táim an-bhródúil, agus is mór an onóir dom é, a bheith mar chomharba Liam Cosgrave mar Theachta Dála do Dhún Laoghaire.

I am deeply saddened by the death of Liam Cosgrave who served Ireland with great distinction and patriotism. He was a most honourable man. He was a man of his time who had inherited an extraordinary personal and political legacy. From 1948 until his retirement he topped the poll in the constituency. His father's biographer, Mr. Michael Laffan, remarked that W. T. Cosgrave had been insufficiently concerned with his party and public opinion. He said his son, Liam, had learned his lesson and always remained deeply involved in Fine Gael's activities. I am very well aware that this involvement manifested itself in assiduous attention to local constituency matters, as well as his many wider national responsibilities.

Members of this House appreciate and are very aware of the need to keep politics local. Liam Cosgrave's election poster in 1973 was headed: "Cosgrave puts the nation first". That was very true, but he always kept Dún Laoghaire a very close second. Although many years have passed since he stood down, I continue to meet constituents and supporters who remember him so well. Without exception, they speak fondly of his attachment to the greater Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown area and its people and especially his courtesy, kindness and dedication. These sentiments are expressed across all party lines and by people from all backgrounds. He was genuinely admired and liked. To his children, Mary, Liam and Ciarán, and their families, I extend my deepest sympathy. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam dilís.

Deputy Maria Bailey: Information on Maria Bailey Zoom on Maria Bailey It is with great sadness that I speak about the late Mr. Liam Cosgrave. I have listened to many others speak before me outlining some of his many great achievements, but, to use some of his own words in a different forum, "the facts speak for themselves." He was a man who got things done without any self-interest. He represented the people of Dún Laoghaire from 1943 to 1981 with great pride and diligence.

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