The much loved and admired politician Nicky McFadden (51 ) was laid to rest in Coosan yesterday, Thursday March 27.
Chief mourners included her daughter Caren, son Eoin, sisters Gab and Aine, brother-in-law Brian and granddaughter Matilda.
Also in attendance were President Michael D Higgins, Taoiseach Enda Kenny, Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore, and her cabinet colleagues and former Seanad colleagues.
Deputy McFadden passed away on Tuesday after battling motor neuron disease for the last two years. She had been diagnosed with the disease in December 2012.
Deputy McFadden served as a councillor on Athlone Town Council and Westmeath County Council before joining the Seanad, and was elected to Dáil Éireann in 2011 after an unsuccessful 2007 campaign.
Tributes to the late Nicky McFadden poured in during the week, after she lost her battle with motor neuron disease on Tuesday (March 25 ).
Of the late Fine Gael TD, President Michael D Higgins said, “I have with sadness just heard of the death of Deputy Nicky McFadden. She made an outstanding contribution as a Senator and Deputy and showed immense courage in continuing her public service after having been diagnosed with a serious illness. All of our thoughts at this time are with her family, friends, and constituents in Longford-Westmeath.”
Former Fine Gael TD Paul McGrath said, “I’ve known Nicky since the 80s, when her father was my running mate in my first election. I always found her very pleasant, a very positive lady who was dealt a very sad hand of cards by life to develop motor neuron disease at such a young age. It’s awful.”
Her three fellow TDs for Longford-Westmeath also paid tribute to their colleague. Fine Gael’s James Bannon said she was a political figure of great integrity and courage.
“She contributed much to community life and was universally respected in the constituency. Nicky has passed away at a young age after an illness bravely borne. To those of us who knew her well, we will remember her for her passion for politics and her genuine interest in people,” he said.
Labour’s Deputy Willie Penrose said, “She was a tremendous colleague and was great to work with. She had a very endearing, compassionate, and warm personality.” Meanwhile Fianna Fáil’s Deputy Robert Troy added, “Nicky performed her duties as a TD with dignity and poise and she will be sorely missed as a colleague in Leinster House and as a public representative in Longford-Westmeath. I have known Nicky since 2004, when we were both elected to serve on Westmeath County Council. I have always found her to be warm, pleasant, and she always acted in the best interests of her constituents.”