Kilsallagh, Westport, Co Mayo
Martin (better known as Matt) Gill passed away peacefully on April 10, in the care of his loving family.
Matt was born on March 2, 1952. He was educated in Murrisk National School and Westport Vocational School. Being part of a large family, Matts working life started in his childhood years with chores on the family farm and a near-by caravan park. He trained as a motor mechanic in Sligo and took up employment at Hastings Garage, Westport. Later he worked in Allergan, Westport and Nomadic, Louisburgh.
Matt married Beatrice Kilcoyne on July 5, 1980, and on the same day, Beatrice’s twin Ann married her husband Mike Hynes. Matt and Beatrice set up home in Murrisk, later moving to Kilsallagh, where they raised their three daughters.
Following a bumpy flight returning home from honeymoon, Matt became a reluctant flyer for several years, but he later caught a travel bug and found himself accompanying Beatrice to places such as Hong Kong, Australia and New Zealand, amongst others.
Matts favourite hobbies involved restoring vintage cars with his good friend John Blane. Matt and John would proudly display the cars they restored at vintage shows around Ireland. He also spent many happy hours working alongside his good friend John O’Toole, fixing cars for family and friends.
There didn’t seem to be anything Matt couldn’t fix. When he wasn’t fixing cars, he could be found fixing, hair straighteners, washing machines, showers, TV’s, lawnmowers, and children’s toys, for his extended family and his wide circle of friends. He also loved working on the bog and often tried to instil the same passion in his daughters, which mostly resulted in more work for him, having to pull dolls and prams out of ditches and bog holes. In later years he used the bog as a negotiating tactic, offering a driving lesson in exchange for one line of turf to be done.
Matt was known for his broad smile and a mischievous glint in his eyes, often playing tricks on family and friends. He was also known for his large appetite and those closest to him will miss his generous Full Irish Fry and the Sunday dinners he prepared. He loved to pop over on a Sunday to Murrisk Village to catch up with his family and friends.
In his latter years, he enjoyed the company of his three grandchildren whom he adored. He spent hours talking to them on video calls and snatched them away as soon as they landed at his door.
Although the health service faced pressures of a Covid pandemic and a cyber-attack, luckily for Matt his treatment and care went smoothly, right up to his final days, and whilst in hospital Matt was able to request his wishes including songs, pictures and arrangements that he wanted for his funeral.
Matt was predeceased by his parents Sarah and Martin (Murrisk) and is survived by his loving wife Beatrice (née Kilcoyne), daughters Maria Gill (Galway), Caroline Lilly (Dublin) and Sarah Burke (Oranmore, Galway), sons-in-law Conor and David and his adoring grandchildren Martin, Clodagh and Ellie.
He will be deeply missed by his brothers Austin, Tom and Seamus, sisters Maureen, Ann and Sal, sisters-in-law, brothers-in-law, nieces and nephews, cousins and a wide circle of neighbours and life-long friends.