Belfast Telegraph

Taoiseach's tribute after death of US Ambassador

By Brian O'Reilly

The Taoiseach led tributes last night to former US Ambassador to Ireland and Pittsburgh Steelers chairman Dan Rooney, who died at the age of 84.

Mr Rooney, whose family is originally from Newry, was appointed as US Ambassador in 2009 by then US President Barack Obama.

The billionaire was sworn in by then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and remained in the post until 2012, when he resigned to help Barack Obama campaign for re-election. Mr Rooney also prepared the way for the Obama visit to Ireland.

"I am deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Dan Rooney. Dan was a personal friend of mine and the proudest Irish supporter of the Pittsburgh Steelers," Taoiseach Enda Kenny said.

Irish President Michael D Higgins said: "He leaves a massive legacy which will benefit many people for the years to come."

Mr Rooney was co-founder of the Ireland Funds, which helped fund peace and reconciliation projects.

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