Former Chief Superintendent and veteran Councillor Barney Fitzpatrick passed away yesterday afternoon. Barney was a well known and respected councillor in the Causeway Coast and Glens Borough as well as further afield for his work in the police force.
Barney Fitzpatrick, was elected to Coleraine Borough Council in 2006 after topping the poll on the first count. He was re-elected in May 2011 and sat on the Causeway Coast and Glens Council. Barney also served as a Harbour Commissioner for Coleraine and was Chairman / Party Representative on a number of other Council Committees.
Barney was a retired Chief Superintendent of Police and had over thirty-five years operational experience in a variety of roles. He tirelessly worked for the Community and had been responsible for many cross community initiatives throughout the province. Mr Fitzpatrick was awarded the Queens Police Medal for professional Police services to the public. He was holder of a Royal Humane Award for Bravery and has 11 Commendations for exceptional Police work.
Local MLA’s / Councillors have paid tribute to their colleague :
Alderman Norman Hillis, the leader of the Ulster Unionist grouping in Coleraine said “Councillor Barney Fitzpatrick was a man who worked tirelessly for our community both in his role as a police officer and as a councillor. Always popular with his colleagues. He will be sorely missed by everyone. My sincere condolences to his wife and family.”
Independent Councillor Padraig McShane said “It was with a great sense of shock and sadness that I learned of the passing of Councillor Fitzpatrick yesterday afternoon. Very easy to get along with and with a wicked sense of humour he was popular with all members. Barney had a great ability to apply common sense and no little knowledge to the many and varied dogmatic issues that faced members on a regular basis.
I wish to extend my deepest and most heart felt sympathies to Barneys wife, family and his friends.”
East Londonderry MLA Maurice Bradley, a former Council colleague of the late Barney Fitzpatrick following his passing on Saturday afternoon. “I got on well with Barney, I enjoyed his devilishly sense of humour, he always had a joke or a yarn to share. I was speaking with him just last week at during the Freedom of the Borough Ceremony for the Lord Lieutenant for County Londonderry Sir Dennis Desmond. Of course he had a few jokes to tell, but he also informed me he was shortly to stand down from Council. His passing is a sad occasion. He was a man of the utmost integrity both as a Councillor and in his former employment in the RUC. I would extend my sincere condolences and prayers to his wife Theresa, immediate family and extended family circle at this sad time.
Coleraine DUP Trevor Clarke said “I’m shocked and saddened at the news of Barney’s sudden passing. Barney was well regarded for his service in the police and latterly as a representative on council. My thoughts and prayers are with his family at this time.”
Claire Sugden MLA said “My sincere condolences to Barney’s wife Theresa, his family, friends and all who knew him. I was very fond of Barney and so deeply saddened to hear of his passing. Barney was a well respected, gentle character who was liked by all who came to know him. He served the community long both as a police officer and then as a local Councillor. Barney was a man of integrity, never seeking to cause difficulties, but always helping to bring people together. God Bless his family at this very sad time.”