Deputy mourns 'Uncle Eamon'
Wicklow TD Pat Casey has paid tribute to his uncle, Bishop Eamon Casey, following his death in the early hours of Monday morning.
The former Bishop of Kerry and Galway passed away at the age of 89 and had been in the care of Carrigoran nursing home in Clare for some time.
'Our family loved Eamon. 'Uncle Eamon', as he was known to us, was as jovial and as caring a man to his family, as he was to the many people he served in his public ministry as a priest and bishop,' said Deputy Casey.
He said that Eamon Casey's heart belonged to the West of Ireland.
'Born in Kerry, raised in Limerick, Uncle Eamon was devoted to his Catholic ministry and to the people of his parishes and subsequently his dioceses. Uncle Eamon worked hard in trying to achieve social justice for many causes close to his Christian belief, such as the plight of Irish emigrants, the courage of the Dunnes workers protest against apartheid South Africa and the people of San Salvador who suffered brutal oppression from their Government,' Deputy Casey said.
Making reference to the controversies in his uncle's life, including his well-publicised relationship with American divorcée Annie Murphy during which he fathered a son, Deputy Casey said that the family is 'acutely aware' of these.
'As a family we are also acutely aware of the controversies in Uncle Eamon's life. He has passed from this life during the Christian season of Lent which considers such themes as sacrifice, atonement and reconciliation,' he said.
'I would like to praise and thank the staff in Carrigoran Nursing Home in Clare that looked after Uncle Eamon during these past years. I also want to acknowledge the people of the Diocese of Galway, Kilmacduagh and Kilfenora who will be honouring Uncle Eamonn by participating in his funeral and burial in Galway Cathedral,' he added.