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Death of former Ceann Comhairle: Expressions of Sympathy

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Death of former Ceann Comhairle: Expressions of Sympathy

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Snippet Contents:

On behalf of the Independents 4 Change technical group, I offer condolences to the family of former Deputy Séamus Pattison, including his brother and sister-in-law who are here today, the people of Carlow and Kilkenny and, in particular, his Labour Party colleagues. I first got to know Séamie in the early or mid-1980s. We sometimes had different views on things. I was a member of the Labour left co-operative, which had a particular view about the development of the party, but I always found Séamie to be extremely supportive, kind and sincere and I was very proud to stand beside him as a candidate for the first time in 1989. Many new young Labour Deputies were elected to the House in the famous Labour class of 1992 and we found Séamie to again be very supportive. He was a mentor and at meetings and in committees, he was quiet, self-deprecating at times, very witty and extremely helpful.
We had the same experience during his time as Ceann Comhairle and Leas-Cheann Comhairle. He took particular care to ensure that all backbenchers who wanted to make contributions on the Order of Business would be accommodated, a tradition I am glad is being continued by the current Leas-Cheann Comhairle. As Ceann Comhairle and Leas-Cheann Comhairle, Séamus represented the Oireachtas and the country with enormous distinction with foreign visitors and when he represented us abroad. That he spent 46 years as a Member of the Dáil and the Pattison family spent seven decades representing Kilkenny city and county and County Carlow is a truly remarkable achievement. In the case of Séamus, it arose from his absolute devotion and fabulous work as a servant of his native city and the people of Kilkenny and Carlow. I will always remember him as a kind and gentle man who upheld the best traditions of Irish life. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam dílis.