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20th Dec 2016

This Letter From Bill O’Herlihy To A Rookie Journalist Shows What A Class Act He Really Was


Among all the tributes being paid to the late Bill O’Herlihy, one word that keeps popping up is ‘gentleman’.

Not only regarded as a legend of the sporting, political and PR worlds, it’s become very clear in the last 24 hours that Billo was also regarded as a thoroughly lovely human being – and not just because of the normal eulogising, but because of the anecdotes and the tales people are recounting about the great broadcaster.

Take this one from ex-Indo writer Cliona Foley, for example, who was a rookie at the time writing about RTÉ’s coverage of Italia ’90 – Ireland’s first World Cup – which was anchored by Bill.

For those who can’t see the text in the image, it reads as follows:

“Dear Cliona,
“Now that I have returned to the “real world” after a break following the World Cup, I write to say how much I appreciated the kind words you wrote during my four weeks on air.
“It was a privilege to be involved in a broadcast which encompassed a bit of Irish Sports history and even if the hours were long, I had a great time.
“I know you won’t feel I am trespassing on your objectivity when I say how much we valued the support you gave us on the RTE Sport team during the World Cup coverage. I am extremely grateful to you.
“Yours sincerely,
“Bill O’Herlihy.”

What. A. Class. Act.

READ: Roddy Doyle’s Tribute To The Late, Great Bill O’Herlihy Is Absolutely Perfect