Banteer native, who spent 30 years as a county councillor, was a man of ‘honesty, integrity and dedication’ whose ‘work ethic was extraordinary’
THE Tánaiste, Leo Varadkar, has led tributes to former Cork County Councillor and Fine Gael TD for Cork North West, Frank Crowley, who passed away on Tuesday.
A Banteer native, the late Mr Crowley was first elected to Cork County Council for the Kanturk area in 1974, remaining a member of the local authority for three decades.
Mr Crowley was first elected to the 22nd Dáil for the then-new Cork North-West constituency in 1981 and was re-elected at five further general elections before losing his seat in 1997.
A highly distinguished public representative, Mr Crowley was renowned for his straight-forward, no-nonsense approach to public service, speaking his mind and having a hands-on and ‘do-it-yourself’ approach to getting things done.
The Tánaiste said Mr Crowley was instrumental in winning two Fine Gael seats in the fiercely contested three -seat constituency for six general elections.
“Clearly highly thought of by his electorate, Deputy Crowley was rewarded by being returned to Leinster House and carrying on his work across two decades. Like his father, Pat, before him, Frank was also a member of Cork County Council from 1974 to 2004, serving as Cathaoirleach in 1987/88,” said the Tánaiste.
“I pay tribute to his work for the constituency, his country and for what he achieved for Fine Gael,” he added.
Sitting Cork-North West TD Michael Creed, whose late father, Donal Creed, also served alongside the late Mr Crowley in the Dáil, said it was with “great sadness that I learned of the passing of my former Dáil colleague, fellow Fine Gael member and friend.
“He was a member of Cork County Council for more than 30 years, a TD for 16 years and a public representative with a cross-party reputation for honesty, integrity and dedication,” said Deputy Creed.
“I had the privilege of working with Frank when we were both Fine Gael TDs for Cork North West. His work ethic was extraordinary,” he added.
Deputy Creed described the late Mr Crowley as a “fearless advocate for his constituents” at national level who left no stone unturned in his efforts to serve them, recalling his “tenacity and persistence” in delivering key infrastructural projects, including the Kanturk Flood Relief Scheme.
“At home in his beloved North Cork, he built a reputation for excellence in his approach to public representation in the Kanturk Electoral Area. For Frank, it was all about doing the work and helping people. That is what he did, and he did it consistently well,” said Deputy Creed.
“For that reason, he was always held in high regard by people of all political persuasions and none,” he added.
The Tánaiste and Deputy Creed were joined by Fine Gael Cork County Councillor John Paul O’Shea in offering their sincere condolences to Mr Crowley’s wife, Win; daughter, Leah; son, Ken; and extended family.
“He had a tremendous career, was a gentleman to the core and left a lasting legacy in the town of Kanturk and the wider Cork North constituency,” said Cllr O’Shea.
“He was a neighbour, a friend and was a great guiding hand to me over the last number of years.
“Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam dílis,” he added.
Former Taoiseach and Fine Gael leader John Bruton said he was “deeply saddened” to learn of Mr Crowley’s passing.
“His formidable vote-getting ability was vital to enabling Fine Gael to get into Government. Frank loved North Cork and spoke up for it with deep conviction,” said Mr Bruton.
The late Mr Crowley’s Funeral Mass will take place at 11am on Thursday morning in St Joseph’s Church, Lyre, with Burial afterwards in the adjoining Cemetery.