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O'Donnell, Kieran

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Death of Former Member: Expressions of Sympathy

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Death of Former Member: Expressions of Sympathy

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Death of Former Member: Expressions of Sympathy

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Deputy Kieran O'Donnell

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Snippet Contents:

I welcome the Clohessy family to the Visitors Gallery. It is great to see so many of the family today. I am delighted to be a part of these expressions of sympathy to the late Peadar.
I had a quick look back. Peadar was born in 1933. People referred to his connection with the GAA. He was born when Limerick hurling was coming out of the doldrums and just before a golden age. We won All-Irelands in 1934, 1936 and 1940. His uncle, the late Paddy Clohessy, played in all of those All-Irelands. I hope that, in 2014, Limerick will go on to take another hurling All-Ireland.
Peadar had a fantastic career that spanned 25 years. In 1974, he was elected to Limerick County Council for the Castleconnell electoral area, which I also represented. He was in the local authority until 1999 and served as cathaoirleach of Limerick County Council between 1992 and 1993. Side by side with this work, he had an illustrious career as a Deputy for the old Limerick East constituency, which is now called Limerick City. He represented many of the people on my side of the county. Obviously, Fedamore was his native base. He represented Fianna Fáil and the Progressive Democrats with distinction for a long time. As the Taoiseach stated, he was Whip for the Progressive Democrats and Deputy Chief Whip while that party was in government with Fianna Fáil. Furthermore, he was spokesman on marine and defence.
He was an extremely approachable man and the epitome of the wise and simple man. He understood people's needs. Deputy Niall Collins referred to his late wife, Jean. From speaking with family members, I know that she was a central focus in the family. This crosses all political divides - the family plays a vital role. This is particularly so of spouses and partners. Matters are different now, but when Peadar was a Deputy and councillor, the work was based in the home. Constituents came to one's home. Family was extremely important.
Peadar was synonymous with Des O'Malley. They went through all phases of their careers together and were a good combination.
I pay tribute to the fantastic work that Peadar did for the people of Limerick. I also pay tribute to his late wife, Jean, and his family members, who are present. It is great to see his sons and daughters - Andrew, Patrick, Michael, Alice, Margaret and Sinéad - and, I do not doubt, some of his sisters and extended family. It is a proud moment for them. We in the national Parliament have the great privilege of being able to serve people. Peadar served the people of the country and, in particular, Limerick East with great distinction and I am delighted to be a part of this tribute.