Warm tributes to popular chef who died on the Reeks

The late John Dunne is rembered by work colleagues as the most legendary head chef, friend and leader

The funeral arrangements for the man who died while out walking on the MacGillycuddy’s Reeks this week will be announced later.

The body of John Dunne, who lived in Thurles and was originally from Lisdonowley, Moyne, Co Tipperary, was found om Friday morning after a search of over 24 hours involving Kerry Mountain Rescue Team volunteers, a Rescue 117 helicopter, search and rescue dogs, the specialist Iveragh coastguard drone team and residents from Lisleibane and Coolroe.

A real nature lover, John was a very regular visitor to Killarney where he thoroughly enjoyed the outdoor life. The alarm was raised when he failed to return to his accommodation late on Wednesday night, having embarked on his walk earlier in the day.

John was a very regular visitor to Killarney where he enjoyed the outdoor life

Following the extensive search and rescue operation, his remains were found near steep ground at the back of Lough Cummeenapeasta on the eastern Reeks.

John, who was 61, is survived by his wife Mary, son Eoin, brothers Joe and Ned, nephew, nieces, sister-in-law, uncles, aunts and many other relatives and friends. He was predeceased by his parents Denis and Josie.

He was a chef at the landmark Horse and Jockey Hotel in Thurles where he has worked for 35 years.

In a moving post on social media, the business owners described John as “the most legendary head chef, friend and leader”.

The post read: “Thank you for being our rock, for keeping us all going during the hard times, for the fun and laughter. After 35 years we cannot believe that you are gone. Jockey life will never be the same. Our thoughts are with Mary and Eoin during this incredibly difficult time.”

The Kerry Mountain Rescue Team also extended sincere condolences to the family and friends of John and thanked all those who assisted in the search.

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