Sunday 17 December 2017

Tributes paid to agony aunt who 'helped thousands'

Ralph Riegel

IRELAND'S favourite 'agony aunt', Patricia Redlich (70), saved lives and helped thousands of people over her lengthy career.

The tribute came as the funeral of the mother, journalist, clinical psychologist and lifelong trade unionist was held at the Island Crematorium in Cork yesterday.

Eulogies were said for Ms Redlich -- who died last Tuesday after a brave battle against cancer -- by her husband, Val Rossiter, and her friend and colleague of 40 years, Eoghan Harris.

Ms Redlich wrote a popular advice column for many years for the 'Sunday Independent' -- and was hugely respected within both Irish media and psychology circles for her dedication, hard work and professional skills rooted in common sense.

Mr Rossiter said she had enjoyed a new lease of life following their move several years ago from Dublin to a rural home at Old Parish in Dungarvan, Co Waterford.

"The city girl had become a country girl," he said, stressing that she loved the sea, the local landscape and above all the local people.

"When she got out of hospital in Dublin she delighted in coming back to Old Parish to her home and also to her garden," he said.

But he admitted that, try as she might, his wife could never get used to the novelty of meeting cattle on rural local roads.

Mr Harris -- a friend since the 1960s when he met Ms Redlich in political and trade union circles -- had also worked alongside her on the 'Sunday Independent' for many years.

"Her column helped thousands of people and, indeed, it saved lives," he said.

Mr Harris added that she had been a fearless campaigner as a trade unionist and a socialist in the 1970s and 1980s -- focusing particularly on issues to do with women's rights and opposition to the violence of the Provisional IRA's campaign.

The mourners were led by Mr Rossiter, her son Alex, sisters Ann, Jane and Leslie and her brother Paul. A lifelong choral music fan, Ms Redlich's funeral featured hymns by the Waterford choir she was a member of, the Deise Singers.

Irish Independent

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