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Comedian Ciaran Murray in moving tribute to his late father

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Tribute: Ciaran and Pat Murray

Tribute: Ciaran and Pat Murray

Ciaran Murray

Ciaran Murray

Tribute: Ciaran and Pat Murray

A comedian and businessman from Northern Ireland has paid a touching tribute to his "hero" father after he passed away in a care home last week.

Pure Derry and Ulster Fry writer Ciaran Murray shared a childhood picture on Father's Day of Patrick 'Pat' Murray.

Mr Murray had been a resident of Greenhaw Lodge Care Home and had been living with dementia before passing away last Monday.

Posting on the Pure Derry page, his son said his "infamous sense of humour" had inspired his comedy career.

"We had been unable to see him the past few months as he was in a care home," he said.

"He was a brilliant, warm hearted, upbeat man, who had time for everyone, not least his wains."

He added: "It sounds cliched, but my da really was my hero. If this makes ye sad, please know I'm also having a class Father's Day of my own with my wee girl. As heartbreaking as the loss of a parent is, the joy/job of being one is never clearer."

In an earlier post, he said as a master floor layer, his dad "was as strong as a bull yet could sing like an angel".

"He could hold a conversation with anyone, on any topic, and his sharp sense of humour and wordplay were infamous. He could also write, sketch, paint, cook, sew, iron, help with your homework, solve equations and invent new gadgets on demand. He was the kindest, most talented and smartest man I've ever known - and he was a dauntingly impressive role model (and a great father).

"I'm absolutely heartbroken I won't get to see him again, yet incredibly relieved we will no longer have to watch him suffer. Dementia is a cruel illness that robs people of all their special gifts, and (over time) their loved ones of them."

He thanked the "incredible" care home staff for their dedication during his illness.

With social distancing measures in place, he added that the family held a private gathering after his funeral "at which no-one could get a word in edgeways. I think we did him proud".

Belfast Telegraph