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  • Writer's pictureMichelle Weir (Local Democracy Reporter)

Mayor leads tributes to number of borough’s residents who have died

Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Alderman Gerardine Mulvenna

Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Alderman Gerardine Mulvenna


The Mayor of Mid and East Antrim led tributes to former residents who died recently before a one-minute silence was observed and members stood as a mark of respect at a council meeting earlier this week in The Braid, Ballymena.


Alderman Gerardine Mulvenna said:


“I was shocked and saddened to learn of the tragic death of a young girl from Larne as the result of a medical emergency.



“The loss of a child especially in such circumstances is devastating, not only for her family, but also a huge shock to the local community. There are no words that can adequately reflect the sense of loss and pain being felt by all concerned.


“I wish to pay tribute to all the first responders and emergency services who attended the scene of this incident, particularly the Air Ambulance, for their efforts in very upsetting circumstances.


“On behalf of all members of council, I would extend our sincere condolences to her family and friends and our thoughts are with them at this very difficult time.



“We also had the tragic news of the death of Margaret Small, from Larne, who died in a recent road traffic accident. On behalf of council. I would extend our sincere sympathies to Margaret’s family and friends and our thoughts are with them at this very sad time.


“I was saddened to learn of the recent death of former long-serving DUP MLA for the East Antrim constituency, David Hilditch, who has stepped down from politics in recent months due to ill health.


“Many tributes have been paid to David who dedicated more than 30 years of his life to serving the local community, including as mayor and deputy mayor, of his home town of Carrickfergus.



“He was also a devoted and passionate supporter and director of his beloved Carrick Rangers Football Club. As an extremely hard-working and committed public representative, I know that his loss will be keenly felt. On behalf of council, I would extend our sincere sympathies to David’s family, friends and party colleagues and our thoughts and prayers are with them at this very difficult time.


“Also linked to Carrick Rangers, I was saddened to learn of the death of former footballer, Arthur Curtis. Part of the Steel and Sons Cup winning team of 1967, Mr Curtis remained an ardent supporter of the club after his playing days.. On behalf of council, I extend our sincere sympathies to Arthur’s family circle and friends and our thoughts are with them at this very difficult time.



“Over the weekend, I was saddened to hear of the passing of Robin McIlwain, former photographer for the East Antrim Times and former chairman of the Islandmagee Community Development Association, a role in which he served for almost 20 years. On behalf of council. I would extend our sincere sympathies to Robin’s wife Dorrie, family and friends. Our thoughts are with them at this very sad time.


“And finally, I wish to extend sincere condolences to our colleague Alderman Maureen Morrow on the recent death of her father-in-law Robert Morrow BEM. Robert was the former estate manager for Glenarm Castle for over 40 years. Our thoughts and supports are with you Maureen and wider family circle at this very difficult time.”

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