Sunday 21 December 2014

Tom O’Gorman was playing chess ‘to get to know’ lodger

Saverio Bellante was yesterday charged with the murder of the researcher

Aishling Phelan

Published 14/01/2014 | 11:13

Saverio Bellante. Inset: Tom O’Gorman

A FRIEND of stabbing victim Tom O’Gorman, who met with him hours before he was killed, has revealed how the dead man used chess to get to know the man accused of killing him.

A former Irish Daily Mail columnist, Richard Waghorne, reported in the newspaper that he had met his friend on Saturday afternoon for about two and a half hours on Dawson Street in Dublin city centre.

‘‘Tom and I discussed his new lodger briefly on Saturday and Tom mentioned to me that they were using chess as a way to try to get to know each other better,’’ he said in the Irish Daily Mail.

‘‘I think they were still very much getting to know each other,’’ he added.

He knew Mr O’Gorman for almost ten years after they met in college in University College Dublin.

Talking about his friend’s mood on Saturday he said, ‘‘All the qualities of such a great and wonderful man were in evidence on Saturday as always.

‘‘He was in as good form as I had ever seen him,’’ he explained.

Mr O’Gorman’s tenant, Italian native Saverio Bellante, was yesterday brought before Dublin District court charged with the murder of the researcher.

It is believed they got into an argument following a disagreement over a chess game.

He was found dead and badly mutilated at their home in Dublin before 2am on Sunday morning.

Meanwhile, the Pro Life Campaign is to hold a memorial prayer vigil for Tom O’Gorman in Dublin tonight.

The memorial will take place at St Teresa’s Church on Clarendon St at 7pm.

“The tragic death of our dear friend Tom O’Gorman over the weekend has come as a huge shock and a painful loss to everyone in the pro-life movement,” the group said

“Tom was a truly loyal supporter of the Pro Life Campaign, always ready to put his very considerable talents in research, analysis and writing at the service of the pro-life cause. His reliable, meticulous work, humbly done behind-the-scenes, helped so many good things happen.

“Everyone who met him came away with an enhanced sense of their own worth born from the experience of his interest in them as a human being.

“In this, Tom was something of a phenomenon. He was a ‘people person’ par excellence and a kind man who loved meeting people and getting to know them and share their lives.

“ As the news of his death has spread on TV and social media, the outpourings of sadness and memories of his goodness are reflections of the huge circle of people he knew whose lives he touched.”

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