The late Mr Gerry Bird.
Gerry, Bird, Rathfeigh
The sudden death of agronomist Mr Gerry Bird, Edoxtown, Tara, while working at Drumree on Sunday 20th May last, led to widespread tributes from the agricultural industry and traditional music circles.
Mr Bird passed away doing what he loved most. He was spraying a trial plot with a knap-sack sprayer at Culmullen when he died. He was aged 55, and a native of Longwood.
Deceased studied agricultural science at University College, Dublin, before working with Bayer. In 1986, he established his own crop consultancy which eventually advised on more than 20,000 acres of crops annually. He was also a regular contributor to the Farming Independent's tillage management features.
Farming Independent columnist, Carlow-based agricultural consultant Pat Minnock, paid tribute to Gerry Bird on his website. He wrote: "Once in a while we meet or think of a person that has made a huge contribution to life in general and particularly to our own lives. Gerry Bird was such a person. His untimely and much too early death is a reminder of how fickle life is. Gerry was one of the great people you may be fortunate to come across in your lifetime. He was a font of knowledge which he carried lightly but dispensed of freely and expertly to all who sought his advice."
Mr Minnock described him as a gifted individual, superb wit with a fantastic turn of phrase, an excellent communicator, a great lover of Irish culture, a renowned traditional musician, a walking enthusiast, and a fisherman.
"His work rate, output and attention to detail were phenomenal. His knowledge of agronomy and all things tillage was second to none and he was a walking encyclopaedia to all of his clients and many of his colleagues. He was the 'go to' person when problems arose in fields where we had little or no answers. He imparted his knowledge freely and without reservation, his aim in life to help those who requested assistance. His company was always a pleasure."
In his Tillage column in the Farmer's Journal, Gerald Potterton described Mr Bird as 'an extremely competent, no nonsense agronomist'.
"For many of us, he was a close friend and confidant, mentor and sounding-board, and for a few of us, a shrink as well. But perhaps most of all, he was a straight talker and you were never under any illusion."
Mr Potterton recalled Mr Bird joining him and his son Max on a trip on his canal boat, when he was brilliant company with a wicked sense of humour and a great wit, and a repertoire of accents.
A flute player, deceased was actively involved in the Ashbourne branch of Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann, and was always on hand to play locally and around the county. In the week before his death, he had taken part in a number of sessions around the Meath Fleadh Cheoil in Ashbourne, and he was a great encourager of young musicians, including his daughter, fiddler Aine, who released a CD with Caitlín Nic Gabhann and Ann Marie Grogan. Deceased took a huge interest in his family's education, particularly in music and brought them to weekly classes, to music festivals, and sessions.
He enjoyed the annual music weekend in Louisburgh, Co Mayo, and travelled to many fleadhanna. He was a founder member of Ashbourne Comhaltas and served on the committee for many years and was delegate to the County Board. A great organiser, any job was tackled and done without any fuss. He practically ran the first Meath Fleadh to be held at Ashbourne in 2001. A singer, he had many not so common Irish songs in his repertoire.
Mr Bird is survived by his wife, Miriam Cremin; family, Aine, Muireann, Eoin and Sibeal, relatives and friends. The funeral took place from The Church of the Immaculate Conception, Rathfeigh, to the adjoining cemetery.
Liam Clarke, Navan
There was considerable sadness following the death of Mr Liam (William) Clarke, Dunlow Drive and formerly Blackcastle, Navan, at his residence on 19th May last, aged 68. A native of Navan, deceased was son of the late Annie and Michael Clarke. He worked as a painter and decorator, and spent some time in England.
Deceased is survived by his daughters, Paula, Tailteann Drive, Navan, and Jennifer, Pullamor Far, Cavan; sisters, Betty, Scotland, and May, Navan; brother, Eamon, USA; grandchildren; nieces; nephews; relatives and friends.
The funeral took place from St Oliver's Church, Blackcastle, to St Mary's Cemetery, Navan.
Richard Conway, Bohermeen
The regretted death occurred on Mr Richard (Dickeen) Conway, Faughan Hill, Bohermeen, Navan, at Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital, Drogheda, on 31st May last. Aged 76, deceased was a native of Faughan Hill.
Mr Conway, a farmer, enjoyed gardening and had a great interest in all sports. He had played football with Dunderry.
Deceased is survived by his sisters, Betty McDonagh, Teasy Kelly, Laura McNally, Ann McManus, Gretta Hills, and Eileen; brothers, Johnny and Jim; brothers-in-law; sisters-in-law; nieces, nephews, and many friends.
The funeral took place from St Ultan's Church, Bohermeen, to the adjoining cemetery. A month's memory Mass takes place on Saturday 7th July at 6.30pm, in Bohermeen Church.
Rose Farrell, Trim
There was widespread sadness following the passing on 18th June last of Mrs Rose Farrell, Clonbun, Trim, in her 94th year, at Beaufort House, Navan. Mrs Farrell (nee Daly) was a native of Pubblestown, Kildalkey, and was predeceased by her husband, Pat, in August 1982. Deceased was a devoted wife, mother and grandmother, who was the focal point of her family's life. Her passing leaves a huge void. She is survived by her daughters, Mary Quinn, Laura McCormack, Joan Nolan, Breda Harte, Rosemary Elliott, Dolores Farrell, Sue O'Halloran, and Aine Manning; sons, Desmond, Terry and Patrick; 32 grandchildren; 34 great grandchildren; and great grandson. The funeral took place from St Patrick's Church, Trim, to St Loman's Cemetery.
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