Duffy pays tribute to 'true gentleman'
BOYZONE singer Keith Duffy has led tributes to Dublin socialite and personal friend Niall McCrudden, who died at the weekend.
The businessman was found dead at his home on Saturday evening.
Known as the 'Optician to the Stars' for his numerous celebrity friends, in addition to running a successful business selling sunglasses, the 45-year-old was a tireless fundraiser for Duffy's Irish Autism Action charity.
He travelled to Peru with Duffy, whose daughter Mia is autistic, last October for a charity climb.
"Niall's death leaves a massive gap in my life. The reason I know most of the people I know in Dublin is through Niall McCrudden.
"He was one of life's true gentlemen and had a heart the size of Ireland. Niall was such a selfless guy. This is a very sad day," Duffy said yesterday.
He first met Mr McCrudden, from Glasnevin, in 1993 when Boyzone were starting out.
"He came down and gave us all a free pair of ray bans. That was just his generous nature," said Duffy.
"Niall, along with being a great friend, was a great networker for my charity. He would get items for our charity auctions, sponsor tables and bring all sorts of people together.
"Anything that was going on in your life, Niall tried to make it better. He was a selfless, generous gentleman who would do anything for you," said Duffy.
The former owner of Insight Opticians, last year Mr McCrudden was involved in opening up a Dublin restaurant as well as online business sunglasses.ie
He is survived by his parents, son Matt, twin brother Kevin and sister Eimear.