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Showband star Jimmy Johnston is laid to rest

By Allan Preston

The funeral of showband leader Jimmy Johnston was held in Comber yesterday.

The 77-year-old, who passed away last Thursday after an illness, led the Jimmy Johnston Showband for some 50 years.

In his later career, he worked as an agent, a music producer and even managed Portadown's Seagoe Hotel. He also started Ulster's biggest country music dancing agency.

Mourners gathered at First Comber Presbyterian Church yesterday afternoon.

A funeral notice described the Comber man as a "dearly-loved husband of Carol, stepfather of David". He also leaves behind daughter Yvette, daughter-in-law Julie, grandchildren Kelly, Rebecca, Ryan and Cara, and son-in-law Michael.

While he enjoyed his own life on stage at the height of the showband era in the 1960s and 70s, Johnston later offered a helping hand to newer acts.

Country singer Nathan Carter, who regularly sells out shows across the UK and Ireland, wrote last week: "Very sad to hear of the passing of Jimmy Johnston, a man who believed in me and gave me gigs all over Northern Ireland for many years.

"Today is a sad loss to the music industry. RIP Jimmy."

Belfast Telegraph


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