Thursday 18 October 2018

Sudden death of award-winning architect Kevin in New York

Obituary: Kevin Byrne 1957- 2017

The late Kevin Byrne
The late Kevin Byrne

The death occurred suddenly of Dundalk native and international award-winning architect, Kevin Byrne, on 15 November, 2017, in The Bronx, New York.

From the town’s Avenue Road, Kevin lived and worked at his profession for the last 30 years in the Big Apple.

But he retained close ties with Dundalk, and had a great love of all things Irish, including the language and history.

Kevin regularly returned home, and spent most of his time indulging his passion of collecting books, travelling to Dublin to visit book shops, art galleries and museums.

He was a big supporter of the MOMA (Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art) in New York.

Son of the late Jim and Rita Byrne, Kevin attended the De La Salle primary and secondary schools during his formative years while growing up in Dundalk. He then went to study architecture at University College Dublin. He qualified in 1981, and set off on his travels.

His first stop was London, where he worked for a time, before moving to Canada where he also worked.

He then headed to New York and settled there, practising his profession, and making it his home.

Much of his work involved the design of airport buildings and restaurants in New York, and its hinterland.

In June 2016 Kevin was nominated for, and subsequently won, an international award for his part in the design of the five-star Marmara Hotel in New York, which is Turkish owned.

One of six siblings, he was predeceased by younger brother Tony in Australia in 2000. His parents Jim and Rita passed away in 2003 and 2013, respectively.

He is sadly missed by his sisters, Margaret Barry and Gina McAdam, Melbourne; brothers, Tom and Declan; brothers-in-law, Richard and Brian; sisters-in-law, Helena and Geraldine; nephews, nieces, relatives and friends.

He was cremated and flown home, and reposed at Shevlin’s Funeral Home, and it was gratifying and comforting for his family that so many people turned up to pay their respects, some from Kevin’s school days.

Father Frank Corry SM celebrated Requiem Mass in the Holy Family Church on Saturday, 25 November, 2017, and delivered the eulogy.

The deceased’s nephews and nieces did the Readings and led the Prayers of the Faithful.

Gifts symbolising his life, including his engraved international award, a photograph and a book, were laid before the altar by brothers, Tom and Declan; while his sisters, Gina and Margaret formed the Offertory procession.

The music was provided by singer, Philomena Lawless and organist, Ann Quinn.

The burial of ashes took place afterwards in Saint Fursey’s Cemetery, Haggardstown.

The Argus