The Galway County Council stood for a minute’s applause for the late director of services transportation, marine, and general services, Liam Gavin at County Hall on Monday.
Mr Gavin passed away last Wednesday aged 57 after suffering a heart attack on Monday evening.
The councillors were united in grief and admiration for Mr Gavin as they paid emotional tributes.
County Mayor Michael Connolly said: “Shocked is an understatement. I wish to extend my sympathies to his wife Eileen, his children Aine and Thomas, and to his extended family. Speaking to the staff here [at County Hall] they said he was the nicest boss you could have which is a tribute to the man. He will be sorely missed on the council.”
Tuam area councillor Mary Hoade said: “It is a very sad day in the chamber as it is the first day without Liam. He was a true gentleman, excellent ambassador, and public official.”
Fine Gael councillor Michael ‘Moegie’ Maher said Mr Gavin was an exceptionally person who stood out. “Liam Gavin was like a father figure to me. He stood up to any challenge he faced especially last year through the depths of flooding.”
Connemara area councillor Thomas Welby described Mr Gavin as the ultimate professional. “He always did his best and always saw the bigger picture. I cannot say enough about the man. Liam is a huge loss to the council but an even bigger loss to his family.”
Fianna Fáil councillor Donagh Killilea proposed that the local authority should consider naming a bridge or a road after Mr Gavin to remember his work.
Cllr Michael Fahy echoed Cllr Killilea’s sentiments saying that a part of the outer Galway bypass should be called after Mr Gavin.
“Liam was one of the most outstanding officials I ever met. Liam will never be forgotten in this council.”
Mr Gavin was buried in Rahoon cemetery on Saturday after Mass at St Ignatius Church, Sea Road.