Wednesday 20 September 2017

Obituary: Farewell to a gentleman

GREAT LOSS: Doug McCoy
GREAT LOSS: Doug McCoy

The people at the OHM Group were always the finest to deal with. OK, they have some of my top marques such as Land Rover, Jaguar and, of course once, my all time favourite, Saab.

But that said, there was - and is - a level of politeness, care and respect about the group which was both old-fashioned and wonderfully refreshing, while being totally professional. There was, dare I say it, a reassuring Protestantism there. Nobody exemplified this more than Doug McCoy, who died unexpectedly at his home last week aged only 64. Doug was one of the most respected figures in the Irish motor industry and was a lover of all things sporting. He had a wide circle of friends outside his business life, particularly in rugby and horse racing circles.

His long-serving career of more than 40 years with the OHM group saw him serve as sales manager for Saab, rising to general manager for Saab-Scanveco until 2011 when he was appointed general manager for Jaguar Ireland. He subsequently was fleet and business manager for Jaguar- Land Rover Ireland.

Colleagues in the industry remember Doug for his professionalism, courtesy and affable nature. He represented Saab on the Distributors' Committee of the Society of the Irish Motor Industry for many years.

Gerard O'Farrell, managing director of OHM, spoke of the great loss to Doug's colleagues and friends. "He was a true gentleman, a friend to all. He was always in good humour. He greeted everyone with a smile and no matter what the task, it was always 'no problem'. He will be greatly missed as a friend and business colleague." Chief executive Declan McCourt said Doug was a man "universally loved".

Outside his business interests, Doug had a passion for rugby and was club captain of Old Wesley, subsequently president, and later became director of rugby at the club where his father, Bob, also had strong connections. He was a strong horse racing enthusiast and had many friends here also who will miss his lively contributions.

It was fitting that the Georgian Whitechurch Parish Church in the foothills of the Dublin Mountains was absolutely packed last Thursday with hundreds outside as Doug was bade farewell with great gusto to hymns like Guide me, O thou great Jehovah, the carol Once in Royal David's City and the wonderful Psalm 121 I Lift My Eyes To The Hills.

Doug, a perfect gentleman, is survived by his wife Judy, children Graeme and Amy, grandchildren Lucy and Libby and brother Gordon, on whose farm Doug loved to spend time.

- CAMPBELL SPRAY and MARTIN BRENNAN

Sunday Independent

Also in Life