Liam Cosgrave, 1920-2017
The former Taoiseach and leader of Fine Gael, who led Ireland through much of the Troubles, was a very private man
Liam Cosgrave, who has died in Dublin at the age of 97, was a former Fine Gael leader, Taoiseach and member of the 'old guard' of the party, which he led from 1965 to 1977.
His father, William Thomas (WT) Cosgrave, was an IRA volunteer, member of Dublin Corporation, TD and government minister before succeeding Arthur Griffith as president of the Executive Council (prime minister) of the newly created Irish Free State.
His mother, Louisa Flanagan, was the daughter of wealthy Dublin businessman Alderman Michael Flanagan of Portmahon House in Rialto, Dublin. She was a sister of the well-known Dublin character 'Bird' Flanagan, who was rarely seen other than on his horse and who imparted his passion for equine matters, from hunting to horse racing, to his young nephew.