'A political colossus': Limerick's longest serving councillor passes away

Nick Rabbitts

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Nick Rabbitts

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nick@limerickleader.ie

'A political colossus': Limerick's longest serving councilor passes away

Limerick's longest serving councillor Pat Kennedy, pictured in the distinctive city robes

FORMER mayor, senator and Alderman Pat Kennedy, who sadly passed away overnight, has been described by friends and family as a “political colossus”.

Mr Kennedy died at University Hospital Limerick following a short illness, and is expected to be laid to rest later this week.

A councillor in the former ward four district for almost 50 years, Mr Kennedy was initially elected as a representative of the Limerick Ratepayers Association back in 1967.

He later joined Fine Gael, and ended his political career on the Independent benches, stepping down at the 2014 local elections.

A Senator from 1981 to 1993 on the administrative panel, Mr Kennedy also stood as a Fine Gael general election candidate at four counts. He was Limerick’s first citizen twice, between 1974 and 1975 and then 1985 and 1986.

Tributes have been paid to the popular southside man, who was a teacher, and a barrister-at-law, and latterly a writer.

Fine Gael’s leader in the metropolitan district, Cllr Daniel Butler said: “Pat had a long and distinguished career in politics in the city. He worked very hard for the people he represented. My thoughts are with his family at this very difficult time, in particular with his son Tom, who I knew very well.”

“I know Pat was well respected in the area among all the communities he represented over the years. He had a very distinguished and colourful career, doing all he could,” he said.

Mr Kennedy’s nephew, local accountant Brian McEnery added: “He was a political colossus.”

“He had a long life of public service. I think there were three things that were particularly pleasing for him throughout his career. The biggest ones were the mayoralties, and he was also proud of the fact he was president of the Limerick Chamber of Commerce. I know for certain he enjoyed being in the Senate,” Mr McEnery said, “He was a proud Limerick man.”

Following his retirement from council, Mr Kennedy wrote a biography on the Chief Justice Hugh Kennedy called Hugh Kennedy: The Great But Neglected Chief Justice.

He is survived by his wife Loretto, and four children Tom, Loretto junior, Alex and Shane.

Funeral details have yet to be announced.

May he rest in peace.