The late comedian Brendan Grace
THE RECENT passing of comedian Brendan Grace has been met with “shock” from the locals of Killaloe, his adopted home for a number of years.
The Dublin-born entertainer passed away aged 68 earlier today, July 11, from a short illness.
Brendan had been in hospital in recent weeks receiving treatment for pneumonia, and was also receiving ongoing care and treatment for cancer.
The family of the stand-up veteran said he was very grateful for the support from his fans since his illness was announced.
Brendan owned the Brendan Grace Pub which was located on Main Street for several years, before closing for business in 2011.
Though ran by daughter Amanda and her husband, Brendan himself was a familiar and welcome figure in the village.
“He was a very prominent person on the street - but he was a friend of everybody in Killaloe,” a local has said.
“People here are shocked, everyone in Killaloe would have known him, he was a friendly man,” they added, “he shopped locally, got his hair cut in the local barbers - he was a local.”
Brendan lived in Ballina for multiple years, which is located just across the bridge from Killaloe.
Pat Reddan, who owns Reddans Pub which neighboured Brendan’s own pub when it was up and running.
Pat recalls Brendan often drinking in Reddans, and said: “He was a great character, and always had great things to say about everyone. He was always telling jokes, the craic would be had when he was around, you know?”
Brendan originally embarked on his entertainment career as a singer but later turned to comedy, and became well-known for characters like Bottler and the Father of the Bride, as well as Fr Fintan Stack in Father Ted.
His song, Combine Harvester, was also a 1975 number one hit in Ireland.
In recent years, the comedian had suffered ill health but continued to perform and had been due to tour Ireland this summer prior to his cancer diagnosis.
Speaking on RTÉ Radio One's Morning Ireland was Tom Kelly, Brendan’s booking agent for 27 years.
"Brendan Grace was one of the greatest entertainers of this era, no doubt about that. He gave a performance every night that merited the applause he received."
He added: "We can look back with pride on Brendan’s lifetime. He was a great family man, very close with them and he was adored by his fans all over the world."