County mayor leads tributes to the late Bill Gainer
The County Mayor, Cllr Patrick Gerard Murphy, has led tributes a man whose drive and determination helped foster cultural and economic links between Cork, Chicago and the wider Cook County region.
Bill Gainer, who served as the chair of the Cork Committee of Chicago Sister Cites since its establishment in 1999, passed away last week. Cllr Murphy said that Mr Gainer's "drive and charm" had made him instrumental in helping to establish fruitful commercial, cultural and friendship links between Cork its US counterpart.
"In the years since the initial Sister County Agreement was signed, the enhanced commercial and cultural links have provided enormous dividends for Cork, largely due to Bill's dedication and energy," said Cllr Murphy.
He extended his deepest sympathies and those of the people of Cork to Mr Gainer's wife Gerry, six children and their extended family.
"Bill worked tirelessly to foster and cultivate connections between Cook County and Cork County. These connections are extremely important and beneficial and we are both grateful, and honoured, to have had such a relationship with Bill," said Cllr Murphy.
The chief executive Cork County Council, Tim Lucey, said Mr Gainer's passing would be deeply felt by his family, community and his "many friends" within the Council.
"On a personal note, I wish to record and acknowledge Bill's unwavering contribution to society," he added.
The chair of the Cork County/Cook County Partnership and former Cork County Council employee, Ger Power, worked closely with Mr Gainer on numerous projects and initiatives.
"Bill Gainer has been a great friend to Cork and a wonderful personal friend to many within the Partnership. He loved Cork and spent many memorable times here," said Mr Power.
"His passing will leave a huge void for many of us. Bill was a wonderful friend and over the 20-years of the Partnership he was devoted to helping any company or individual from Cork who needed assistance in Chicago," he added.