Colleagues' tribute to 'St Jude' victim Donal Drohan
DEVASTATED colleagues of the Irishman killed in the "St Jude" storm which lashed England, have set up an online book of condolences for his many friends.
Donal Drohan, a father of three, was killed when a tree fell on his car at the weekend.
He had returned to Ireland just two months ago to bury his father.
Mr Drohan (51), who was originally from St John's Park in Waterford city but emigrated to England 30 years ago, was crushed to death when a 40-foot high tree fell on his car in Watford, near London, at around 6.50am on Monday.
The tragedy struck as one of the worst storms to hit Britain in decades killed four people, including Mr Drohan, and caused widespread damage and power outages.
Mr Drohan worked as operations manager for Harrow Council in London for the past 25 years.
His boss for the past decade, David Colby, said Mr Drohan's colleagues were still numb.
"Everybody is pretty shell-shocked," he told the Irish Independent last night.
"He was a well-loved person. He has been here for 25 years and he had a lot of friends," he said.
But it wasn't just his co-workers who spoke of his generosity of spirit and easy-going nature, but also the people of Harrow, his adopted home, where he was active and popular across the whole community, Mr Colby said.
"He would help anyone," he said. "If anyone asked for help he would just jump up and do it. He was solid as a rock and he will be sorely missed."
Colleagues have set up a special email account to which people can send their own personal condolences and memories which will be collated and forwarded on to Mr Drohan's family.
"I'm sure there will be a lot of people who want to contribute," he said.
"He was very much part of the community," he added.
The account is also open to any of Mr Drohan's friends and acquaintances here, who wish to pay their respects to his family, including his family in the UK and his mother Agnes and siblings, who still live in Ireland.
The email address is: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Meanwhile, it's understood that Mr Drohan's family have yet to finalise any funeral arrangements as they continue to mourn the loss of a man they described in a statement as "the best husband and father anyone could wish for".