Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 1 October 2014

Hundreds sign Ryan condolence books

RTE presenter Gerry Ryan was found dead in his Dublin apartment
Members of the public sign a book of condolences for Gerry Ryan

Hundreds of people queued to sign books of condolence for the late Irish broadcaster Gerry Ryan.

Ryan, 53, was found dead on the floor of his bedroom yesterday in the Dublin flat he moved into after splitting with his wife Morah.

Candles were lit and flowers laid at the capital's RTE Radio studios as fans paid their respects to the outspoken "shock jock".

Among those who arrived to sign one of the four books of condolence was Tourism, Culture and Sport Minister Mary Hanafin.

"Gerry wasn't afraid to tackle issues, he wasn't afraid to tackle individuals and by challenging people I think he made us think a little bit more," the minister said.

"He also reached out to groups of people who perhaps didn't have a voice, but who felt that in Gerry they had somebody who was going to air their concerns and their issues. They could have that personal relationship with him even though he was at the other end of a microphone."

A post-mortem examination is set to be carried out in coming days to establish the exact cause of the father-of-five's death, which gardai are not treating as suspicious.

Tributes have poured in for Ryan from political leaders, friends and former colleagues. More than 30,000 people have also visited a page set up in his memory on the social networking website Facebook.

On a special RTE 2FM show dedicated to the Dublin-born personality, U2 frontman Bono described Ryan as the nation's weathervane.

"He was beloved by Irish people," the rock star said. "He'll be so missed for that talent he had for just getting it perfectly right and just judging the mood."

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