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Video: Rev Mervyn Gibson pays tribute to Orange Order Grand Secretary Drew Nelson following death

Rev Mervyn Gibson has paid tribute to Drew Nelson, the Grand Secretary of the Orange Order, following his death.

The Order announced Mr Nelson's death on Monday. He was 60-years-old and had been suffering a short illness.

Drew served as Grand Secretary of the Grand Orange Lodge of Ireland for 12 years, first elected to the position in December 2004.

Previously, he was District Master of Lower Iveagh District in Co Down. Drew was a member of Listullycurran LOL 616. He was also a member of the Royal Black Institution.

During his period of office, Mr Nelson was part of Orange delegations which met senior political and civic figures, including successive First Ministers and Secretary of States, US ambassadors, Taoiseach Edna Kenny, former Irish President Mary McAleese, the then leader of the Catholic Church in Ireland, Cardinal Sean Brady, and the SDLP, among others.

Rev. Gibson, Assistant Grand Master of the Grand Orange Lodge said: "Absolutely, the Orange family are devastated, right across, not only in the jurisdiction of Ireland but in England, Scotland and further afield messages of sympathy are coming in right from the Secretary of State down from the political parties, Drew will be sadly missed not only be the Orange family but the wider community."

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