Fans of comedian Brendan Grace were paying respects to the legendary entertainer in their droves at Dublin’s Mansion House on Thursday.
A book of condolence for the 68-year-old was opened by Lord Mayor Paul McAuliffe and will remain open today until 5pm.
Many remembered the funnyman for his classic and clean form of comedy, which entertained people across the world.
Francis Ross works in the nearby Brooks Hotel, where the Grace family often stay. Frank said he grew up a fan of Brendan, and became a friend in his later years.
He said: “He knew me as Frank. Like everybody, I grew up with him in the 70s and he was our idol, visiting our school with the green cross code, and then going to see him in the Gaiety when I was older.
“I got to know him as a friend in the last 15 years. It’s a very sad day for us all in the hotel. As it happens I’ll be off work on Monday and I’ll be at his funeral – either way, I would have found a way to be there.
“Unlike other comedians, he didn’t lean on the same character all the time. I liked them all, but the Bottler is the one that introduced us all to him.”
Taxi driver Tom Smyth told the Irish Mirror that he picked Brendan Grace and his wife Eileen up from the Red Cow in Clondalkin and took them to a christening in the Old Mill pub in Tallaght about three years ago.
The beloved personality had a few drinks before he got into the cab, and was in fine form chatting away with Tom and Eileen as they headed toward Tallaght.
He said: “I picked them up and Brendan was in great form. I dropped them off and he joked “so do I have to pay for this now?”. He was great like that, classic comedy.
“His wife Eileen took a picture of the two of us that I still have on the phone today. Hopefully all of Dublin turns out for him on Monday.”
Sarah Scully said she visited the Mansion House to pay respects not only for Brendan, but for his family.
She told the Irish Mirror: “He was a lovely man. He brought a lot of joy to people, especially when there’s so much sadness in the world today. I hope his memory is there for a long time.
“He was one of us, so may he rest in peace.”
Agnes Moore left a mass card for the family, and offered a prayer in Brendan’s memory.
“I’m here because he was very good, very cheerful and he was a natural. When you saw him, you couldn’t help but laugh, he was just tremendous and he is gone too soon,” she said.
Mary McQuillan said: “He was a wonderful comedian, never smutty and was great as a singer. Heartbroken to hear that he had passed away. A sad day not only for Dublin, but Ireland. I saw him live loads of times, I’ll miss him.”
Many people attending an event for the Irish Homeless Street Leagues in the Mansion House yesterday afternoon also took the time to sign the book of condolence.
Natalie Bolger said: “Since I was a child, I remember copying all his jokes. My brother had him off to a tee and he was only five years of age. He was just a lovely fella, always seemed to be very happy. We had only heard he was ill last week, and this week he’s gone. Devastated.”
Seamus and Patricia McCormack added: “We were only watching one of his shows the other day. We were very sad to hear the news this morning, we’d heard he was ill. We’re never going to get the likes of him again.”
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Source: Celebrity News Ireland