Longford mourns death of ‘true gentleman’ Donal Drake who worked very hard to enrich the lives of others

Alan Walsh

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Alan Walsh

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alan.walsh@longfordleader.ie

Longford mourns death of ‘true gentleman’ Donal Drake who worked very hard to enrich the lives of others

The late Donal Drake

People across Longford and beyond were saddened to learn of the death of Donal Drake, a man who always strived to enrich the lives of others and was synonymous, in particular, for his work with St Christopher’s Services.

Donal, of Ballinree, Edgeworthstown, passed to his eternal reward peacefully, yesterday (Friday, April 24), at Mullingar Regional Hospital.

Since news of Donal’s death became known, many glowing tributes have been paid. 

St Christopher’s Services CEO Derek Scanlon said Donal made an enormous contribution as trustee, chairperson and board member. 

Mr Scanlon commented, “The entire community at St Christopher’s are mourning the loss of our friend and colleague, Donal. 

“He will be sadly missed and his contribution to St Christopher’s over so many years will be irreplaceable.”

Donal derived immense satisfaction from watching his own club, Mullinalaghta St Columba’s, famously win the AIB Leinster Club senior football championship title in December 2018. 

In a Facebook post, the club said it was with much sadness that they learned of Donal's death.

“Donal was a stalwart of St Columba’s down through the years as a player initially, as a truly dedicated committee member (he held many committee roles including Secretary for many years) and always a supporter of the club and our teams.”

Many of the people that expressed sympathy with Donal’s family on the condolence page of RIP.ie recalled his good humour, friendliness, professionalism when it came to selling cars, being a great neighbour, how he enjoyed to play badminton and trips to Listowel Races.

Donal was also deeply involved with the organisation of the Longford Marathon.

In a statement on its Facebook page, Longford Marathon wrote: “It is with a heavy heart that we announce the passing, after a short illness, of our friend and fellow marathon committee member Donal Drake.

“Donal was a member of the marathon committee for many years, and his good humour, hard work and commitment to the marathon will be sorely missed. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends at this very difficult time. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam.”

The late Donal Drake is predeceased by his parents Terrence and Kathleen and sister Claire, and sympathy is extended to his wife Eileen, daughter Paula (Gibney), son Barry, grandchildren Charlie, Harry and Bobby, son-in-law Sean, godson Aiden, goddaughter Viola, brothers Eamon (Carrickduff), Terry (Abbeylara) and Noel (Ballaghaderreen), sisters Mary Sharkey (Ballaghaderreen), Kitty Farrell (Granard) and Bernie (New York), brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, nephews, nieces, relatives, neighbours and friends. 

A  private family funeral will take place, due to Government advice regarding public gatherings. Those who would have liked to attend the funeral but, due to current restrictions, cannot, please leave your personal messages in the 'condolences' section on RIP.ie. Donations to St Christopher's Longford, if desired.

May Donal Rest In Peace.