Former council colleagues of Deputy Nicky McFadden have paid warm tributes to the Fine Gael TD who passed away last week, describing her as a “lady” who was “everyone’s friend”.
Speaking at Monday’s Westmeath County Council meeting, her party colleague Cllr Frank McDermott said it was with great regret that he was extending sympathy to the McFadden family.
“Nicky contested many elections, succeeded in some and failed in others, but it never stopped her being a lady. The [funeral] ceremony was really Nicky’s day and she just couldn’t see it; thousands of people joined to remember Nicky’s friendship and friendliness. I would like to extend sympathy to her son Eoin, daughter Caren, sisters Gabrielle and Aine, and her family. We’ll scarcely see another Nicky,” he said.
Speaking on behalf of the Fianna Fáil grouping, Cllr Tom Allen said he was elected to Westmeath County Council the same year that Nicky joined Athlone Town Council.
“Politics never came into it with Nicky, she helped and worked hard for everyone. She was everyone’s friend, and never saw any bad in anyone - a wonderful person and it is so sad that death has come at such an early age.
“Everyone in the room feels a real sadness,” he added.
Labour’s Cllr Mick Dollard also paid tribute to the TD and former councillor, whom he said had “a very strong social conscience”.
“She had a huge interest in the area of social housing provision, and the staff in the housing department got calls every day from Nicky. The huge crowds at her funeral were testament to how popular she was. People felt their problem was also her problem; the people of Westmeath have lost a great representative.”
Deputy Nicky McFadden passed away on Tuesday Mach 25 after battling motor neuron disease for the last two years. She was laid to rest in Coosan Cemetery last Thursday.