FUNERAL arrangements have been announced for well-known Limerick City politician and publican Jerry O’Dea, 55, who died suddenly on Saturday.
The Fianna Fáil councillor will be laid to rest on Thursday, the same day he was due to be elected Mayor of Limerick City and County at the annual meeting of the joint local authority.
Taoiseach Micheál Martin led tributes to Cllr O’Dea, a former student at the Shannon College of Hotel Management, who was first elected to Limerick City and County Council in 2014, describing him as a “proud Limerick city man and active supporter of a wide array of city sports clubs, community groups and charities”.
The remains of the father-of-two, who was also widely known as Mayor of the Metropolitan District of Limerick (2015), Chair of the Limerick branch of the Vintners Federation of Ireland, and Chair of the Limerick Milk Market, will repose at Cross’s Funeral Home, Gerald Griffin Street, from 4 to 7pm on Wednesday.
The funeral cortège is scheduled to arrive at St John’s Cathedral, for Funeral Mass at 1pm on Thursday, and will pause outside Mr O’Dea’s pub on Mulgrave Street as it makes its way to Crecora Cemetery.
Local Fianna Fáil TD Willie O’Dea said he was shocked and saddened to hear of the sudden passing of Jerry O’Dea, who he described as a very popular Fianna Fáil Councillor and a long standing publican.
“I held my monthly advice clinic in his pub on Mulgrave Street for decades and knew Jerry and his family long before he got involved in politics. I always found him to be friendly and courteous. He was a dedicated public representative and my thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends at this very sad time.
Books of condolences were opened online, and at the Council’s offices today (Monday) and the Irish flag is flying at half-mast outside the Council’s offices in Merchant’s Quay and Dooradoyle.
Tracy Hegarty, of the Shannon College of Hotel Management, paid tribute in an online book of condolences, describing Mr O’Dea’s sudden passing as “such desperately sad news”.
“Jerry always had a twinkle in his eye and a smile on his face, ever since I got to know him as a fellow student in Shannon College back in 1986, his untimely loss is mounted by so many,” Ms Hegarty wrote.
Mr O’Dea is survived by his father John Joe, daughter Katherine and son JD and their mother Sinead.