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'It’s an awful tragedy, you just don’t expect to hear things like this around here'

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‘HONEST AS THE DAY IS LONG’ The late Brendan Kilduff.

Michael Commins

BRENDAN Kilduff, gentle soul of Knock parish, shot dead? The news was almost too much to comprehend. The shock waves that emanated around the area reached into every home in the region and around the country.
I was down in Carlow at the Ploughing when the messages began to arrive on the phone. Like many people in the general Knock, Aghamore and Kiltimagh areas, I knew Brendan for many years.
I first came across him when he worked as a mechanic in Keane’s Garage in Kiltimagh. Mike Keane ran the kind of traditional garage that also served as a ‘rambling house’ where people met up and chatted about the news of the day. 
Mike’s enterprise would never graduate to the Dow Jones on Wall Street but, in many other ways, it was significantly richer in matters of the heart and true friendships. Cold and damp winter evenings were brightened by the easy rapport and gentle banter among friends.
Brendan and Mike serviced my car on countless occasions over the years. Football and music were subjects that were always close to the surface. Brendan had an abiding love for country music and some of the Irish ballads.
He learned song lyrics like many of us learned poetry in school. Songs of the heart were what appealed to him. Distance was no problem when it came to following some of his favourite singers. He was a very loyal listener to my Wednesday and Sunday night shows on Mid West Radio for the last three decades and to other shows on the station as well.
His late brother John had an abiding fondness for music and poems. He also penned verses and songs and one called ‘The Little White Cross’ was set to music and recorded by the Brose Walsh Band and also by Waterford country singer, Paddy O’Brien.
“Brendan was as honest as the day is long,” Mike Keane told me yesterday. “He worked with us for several years. His hours were flexible and he could be down in the garage late into the night and might then ramble up to the house for a chat and the tea with Louise and myself. Everyone had a good time for Brendan. It’s an awful tragedy, you just don’t expect to hear things like this around here.”
You could sense a lonesome feeling in the hearts of many locals in recent days at the nature of the tragedy that unfolded last Tuesday night. Brendan Kilduff was one of our own who sang from the same hymn sheet as many of our generation. He will be fondly remembered by those of us who knew him on our journey. Rest in gentle peace, Brendan.