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Pádraig Doherty


Geata, Mulranny, Westport, Co Mayo

The bed of heaven to you Pádraig Doherty! Pádraig was a reflective, thinking man, not afraid of the big questions. He stood alone. There was a shyness in him and he was so respectful. Courageous. Loyal. Adventurer. Good-humoured. He saw things in a different way. He made our spirits fresh and made us better – more human and allowed the Spirit to disturb us. He was a man of joyful faith. He carried the treasure. He lit the flame. He was patient, always allowing people ‘a little space’.
A poet at heart, Pádraig specially enjoyed the works of John Donne, Robert Burns and Emily Dickenson. The words of priest-poet Gerard Manley Hopkins always brought tears to Pádraig’s eyes. He was a lover of the Irish language and deeply appreciated its roots, richness and spirituality.
He had a thing about puzzles. He loved to solve them! “We’ll trick around this,” is what he often said to those who worked with him on site when facing a complex problem. He never got over excited. He was very calm.
Speaking at Pádraig’s funeral Mass his niece Sinéad Doherty said: “As Pádraig’s son Seán reminded us this week, one of Pádraig’s favourite sayings and a motto he lived by was ‘You can do anything you want if you put your mind to it.’ …
He often said nothing was impossible and had a solution for every problem. Pádraig was truly a child at heart and many will remember his notorious treasure hunts organised with his good friend Fr Mattie McNeely during the annual festival. Pádraig, as a child, together with his brothers were very enterprising, baking chocolate eclairs and doughnuts. Later they grew vegetables with the help of their neighbour Edmund Carroll, even selling to two very captive buyers in the local shop – Tommy and Anne, their parents…
Pádraig went to Edinburgh where he trained as a carpenter in his Uncle Peter’s firm, working on many projects throughout Scotland. On returning to Mulranny, he set up his own construction firm, Docon, with his brother Tom and became involved in fish farming. Later, Pádraig took a fancy to the local Public Health Nurse from Westport, Máire Cawley. She turned out to be the love of his life and his best friend. They later celebrated their marriage in Egypt, which was cemented by their friend Fr Mattie. They went to Aror and other Developing World Partnerships on their honeymoon. They have two beautiful boys, Seán and Liam, who were at the centre of their Dad’s life – athletics, running, swimming, farming and, most importantly, ensuring that the boys regularly recited their times tables on the journey to and from school.
You will know that Pádraig had a fascination for history, culture and heritage; in fact the more local the better. There is no doubt that Pádraig was at his happiest when he had a new project, challenge or a problem to solve. Pádraig was a generous, kind man and set a good example to us all with his charitable work supporting the Order of Malta, Concern, Aror Partnerships and the Medical Missionaries of Mary.
He was a great man with words, often speaking or giving an oration at family events. And so today, the job is left to me who pales in his shadow. Pádraig regularly had two great quotes or sayings; the first was ‘Be kind’ and the second he took from his father, Tom, ‘You’d always want to have your bags packed.’
Suaimhneas síoraí na bhFhlaitheas duit a Phádraig”.