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RTE broadcaster Keelin Shanley dies age 51 following illness

Tributes have been paid to RTE journalist and broadcaster Keelin Shanley has died at the age of 51

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Keelin Shanley (RTE/City Headshots Dublin)

Keelin Shanley (RTE/City Headshots Dublin)

Keelin Shanley (RTE/City Headshots Dublin)

Tributes have been paid to RTE journalist and broadcaster Keelin Shanley, who has died following an illness aged 51.

Ms Shanley passed away on Saturday afternoon at her home in Dublin.

Ms Shanley had worked across a wide array of RTE news and current affairs programmes, including flagship shows Prime Time and Morning Ireland.

She presented Morning Edition for two years before returning to radio, and taking over as co-anchor on the Six One news on RTE One with Caitriona Perry – the first time two women have done so.

She is survived by her husband Conor Ferguson and son and daughter, Ben and Lucy.

Managing director of RTE News and Current Affairs Jon Willaims paid tribute to Ms Shanley, and said she was “the best of us – and we are heartbroken”.

He said: “From Prime Time Investigates to Morning Edition, Morning Ireland to the Six One News, there wasn’t a corner of RTE News & Current Affairs untouched by Keelin’s fearless, generous, and passionate journalism.”

“For Keelin, the story was never about her – always about others. Her legacy of over 20 years journalism with RTE saw her help tell the stories of so many often marginalised. She strove to inform, probe and encourage.”

In a statement, President Michael D Higgins said: “People all over Ireland will have been greatly saddened by the news of the death of Keelin Shanley, broadcaster and award-winning journalist.

“Driven by a strong commitment to social justice, she brought great professionalism and dedication to her work as a journalist.

“Sabina and I send our deepest condolences to her husband Conor, their children Lucy and Ben, her wider family and her wide circle of friends.”

Fianna Fail leader Micheal Martin said: “I’m very saddened to hear of the death of Keelin Shanley. Keelin was always very warm and engaging in person and incisive and endlessly professional in her journalism. Deepest sympathies to her young family and to all her colleagues and friends in RTE.”

RTE colleagues also paid tribute to Ms Shanley, Morning Ireland presenter Rachael English said: “The saddest of news. Keelin was a wonderful journalist but she was also a fantastic, generous, funny colleague. She’ll be missed so much. Sympathies to her family and friends. May she rest in peace.”

RTE journalist Audrey Carville said: It’s the worst possible news. Our beautiful friend and colleague Keelin Shanley has died. She was so smart and funny and brilliant at everything she did. We will miss you so much Keelin. Deepest sympathies to the family you adored. Rest In Peace.”

PA