Tributes paid to former Dundalk councillor Jim Ryan

Cllr. Jim Ryan

Margaret RoddyThe Argus

Tributes have been paid to the late Jim Ryan who had served as an Independent Councillor on Dundalk Town Council and Louth County Council.

A native of Dundalk, he lived at Fr Murray Park and attended the De La Salle School.

He worked as in Liptons and later as a salesman with P J Carrolls and it was as a community activist that he first got involved in local politics. He was one of a number of local residents who opposed the development of the old De La Salle sports field for the Carroll Village Shopping and subsequently stood for election as an Independent councillor.

He was first elected to Dundalk Town Council in 1999 and onto both Louth County Council and the Town Council in 2004, losing his seat in 2014. At the time, he said he considered his role in voting to keep the Market Square in public ownership to be his greatest achievement.

Tributes were paid to him at the monthly meeting of Louth County Council with Chief Executive Joan Martin stating that he had been a great public representative for the people of Dundalk and Co Louth.

On the website, he was remembered as “a gentleman” who made a huge contribution to the town and always worked for the local community.

Senator John McGahon said “Jim made a tremendous contribution to the political life of Dundalk for over fifteen years. He was a gentleman who helped people far and wide. He will be sadly missed by everyone who had the privilege of knowing him.”

Cllr Sean Kelly posted that Jim  “served our area with distinction for 15 years on both Dundalk Town Council and Louth County Council. Jim was always on call and his dedicated and passionate approach to helping local people and communities was second to none. Jim was deeply involved in his beloved Clan Na Gael Dundalk and many other local groups. He was above all, an absolute gentleman to his fingertips and will be sadly missed by all who knew him.”

Outside of politics, Jim had a long association with the Clan na Gael GAA Club, both as a player and a clubman, serving as chairman and honorary President.

Paying tribute on their Facebook page, the club said  “Jim held more or less every position in the club. Chairman - Football Manager and everything in between. A brilliant person and an absolute gentleman who will be sorely missed by all who knew him.”

Jim also had a great love for classical music and presented his own show ‘Classic Sounds’ for many years on Dundalk FM.

Jim is survived by his wife Ann, daughter Carol, sons John and Stephen, daughters-in-law Ciara and Stephanie, son-in-law Stephen, grandchildren Isabbella, Ayda, Rosie, Phoebe, Mina, Ryan and Grace, sisters Margaret and Elizabeth, brother John, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, nephews, nieces, relatives and friends. He was predeceased by his daughter Vanessa and granddaughter Elyssa.

His funeral takes place on Wednesday, with removal from his home at 9.30am, proceeding on foot to St. Nicholas’ Church, arriving for Funeral Mass at 10am. After Mass, the cortege will continue to the Clan na Gael Grounds for a Farewell Ceremony, followed by private cremation.