Belfast Telegraph

Tributes to SF's Tim Woods who died in Armagh crash

By Allan Preston

Party colleagues have paid tribute to a Sinn Fein activist who died in a road accident in south Armagh on Saturday.

Tim Woods, a father-of-two, aged 52, was in a one vehicle crash at around 3.30pm on the Castleblayney Road near Keady in Co Armagh.

Shortly before the accident he had spent an afternoon out campaigning in the Keady area with his party colleagues for the forthcoming Assembly elections.

Mr Woods was described as a dedicated member of the McVerry' McElvanna Sinn Fein Cumann in Keady.

The Lord Mayor of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough, Councillor Garath Keating, said he knew Mr Woods well and he paid tribute to his friend as "intelligent, witty and thoughtful".

"He was very charismatic and personable. He had spent most of Saturday afternoon out and about doing election work," he told the Belfast Telegraph.

"He was due to return to Keady on Saturday evening to meet with Cathal Boylan (Sinn Fein's candidate for Newry and Armagh).

"We were absolutely shattered when the news filtered through to everyone on Saturday night. It's very difficult for any family to deal with.

"He was a social worker and was very engaged in the local community. He was an Armagh native and moved up to Keady some years ago. I remember he would have served on things like Halloween committees giving young people projects to work on."

He added: "My enduring memory of him is of his good natured banter at any meeting. He was very quick minded and always able to defuse any tension with something witty. He was just very much loved and his company was enjoyed at any meeting or social outing."

Mr Boylan, who was due to have a meeting with Mr Woods on Saturday evening, paid his own tribute in a statement.

"I am shocked and deeply saddened at the news that Sinn Fein party activist Tim Woods was killed in a car crash," he said.

"My thoughts and prayers are with Tim's family as they come to terms with the news of his tragic death and I extend my condolences to them on behalf of myself and the party locally."

He added: "Tim was a valued friend and party activist. He was a man of great wit and charm and will be sadly missed by all who knew him. It's still hard to take in that he has been so tragically taken from us."

Michaela Boyle, Sinn Fein candidate for West Tyrone, added her own condolences: "Thoughts are with all our activists in Armagh tonight following the tragic death of Tim. Prayers for Tim's family and friends at this difficult time," she said.

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