THERE was a real air of sadness and regret in Killorglin yesterday when word filtered through of the passing of Liam Crowley, a vastly experienced solicitor and political activist who was very involved in community life in the town.
A lifelong and passionate member of Fianna Fáil, Liam contested the local elections in Kerry in 2004 and he sought a seat in Seanad Éireann three years later but he wasn’t elected on either occasion.
He made another attempt to win a senate seat in 2016 but, after an impressive showing, he was eliminated on the sixth count for the Cultural and Educational Panel.
Liam was an exceptional, astute and vastly experienced solicitor, taking on and winning many high profile cases, and he was held in very high regard by his colleagues in the legal profession.
He was a very dynamic director of elections for the FF party in a number of local and general election campaigns and his ability to devise a successful strategy tailor-made for individual candidates was well known.
Mayor of Kerry, Cllr Niall Kelleher, said Liam was a very loyal and active campaigner for Fianna Fáil and a gentleman to his fingertips.
“He was a brilliant director of elections and when I took up that role for the party at a later stage, he was always willing to offer very practical advice and helpful information,” he said, adding that the Fianna Fáil party would organise a guard of honour at Liam’s funeral.
Cllr Michael Cahill, who was very close to Liam, said he was devastated to learn that his life-long friend had passed away.
“One of life’s perfect gentlemen, he never had a bad word to say about anyone. Liam was a great family man, a great community man, he loved politics and the Irish language and he was a friend to all,” he said.
Liam was also a very keen sportsman, following the exploits of the local Laune Rangers club and he was a very keen and active golfer.
Cllr John Francis Flynn, who was also politically close to Liam, described him as a personal friend who always guided him with his deep sense of wisdom.
“He was a hugely influential presence in both my elections, in 2014 and 2019, to Kerry County Council. Without his support, I wouldn’t be in the position I am honoured to hold today as a public representative,” he said.
“If I was ever raising issues of importance and felt the need for another opinion before proceeding, I called to Liam’s office and took his experience and worthy advice on board,” he said.
“He was a true gentleman but, above all, a brilliant friend and I’ll forever be grateful for all his help over the years,” Cllr Flynn added.
A man of great wit and humour and a brilliant storyteller, Liam, from Laharn in Killorglin, passed away peacefully at his home on Monday.
Predeceased by his son Cathal and grandson Beau, he is sadly missed by his wife Madeleine, sons Niall and Ray, daughters-in-law Grace and Shonagh, grandchildren Skye and Jasper, sister Mary, brothers Eamon, Joseph, Declan and Dominic, sisters-in-law, nieces and nephews and many relatives, colleagues and friends.
A private family funeral will take place at St James’ Church, Killorglin, with Requiem Mass at 10.30am on Wednesday followed by burial afterwards at Dromavalla Cemetery. A memorial Mass will be held for Liam at a later date.
The link for the live stream of Wednesday’s Mass is https://www.mcnmedia.tv/camera/killorglin-st-james-church.
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