Ex-Bishop Edward Daly spent two decades helping patients at hospice

Ex-Bishop Edward Daly spent two decades helping patients at hospice

Edward Daly brought comfort and peace to Foyle Hospice patients in their final days, the head of the organisation said.

The retired Catholic Bishop of Derry died on Monday aged 82.

After his retirement due to ill-health in 1994, he spent more than 20 years at Foyle Hospice.

Chief executive officer Donall Henderson said: "We will be eternally grateful for the comfort and peace he brought to many patients and families, as well as to our staff and volunteers.

"He truly was a man of the people, very much part of the fabric of Foyle Hospice and will be sorely missed."

As a young priest Dr Daly famously raised a blood-soaked handkerchief and guided a dying teenager through army gunfire on Bloody Sunday in Derry in 1972.

Ex-Bishop Edward Daly spent two decades helping patients at hospice

His latter years were dedicated to more low-profile work caring for the terminally ill and celebrating mass as the hospice chaplain.

Mr Henderson said the cleric supported many patients and their families as well as staff and volunteers when they experienced difficult times.

"The respect and admiration for Bishop Daly was evident by the number of people who attended when he celebrated mass in Foyle Hospice almost every Sunday until he resigned from his duties as chaplain in February 2016.

"Bishop Daly was a highly respected and charismatic individual who treated everyone equally and made no difference to anyone irrespective of whether they held religious beliefs or not.

"He tended to the spiritual needs, but also very clearly understood the practicalities of the needs of patients in palliative care."

Mr Henderson said the cleric had always been a supportive presence and brought a sense of calm and a warm smile.

"Bishop Daly worked tirelessly throughout the whole community, but we were extremely fortunate that his ministry led him to Foyle Hospice."

Friends and relatives of those he encountered took to social media.

Laura O'Neill wrote: "He was such a wonderful man! He brought many a smile and comforting word to my dad and all of us in the family! A true man of God in his every word and deed! He'll be truly missed but he's with the best of them now."

Sarah Ryder said he was a true leader, intellectual and man of peace.

Philomena Lynch McLaughlin said: "Bishop Daly also gave both my mother and father-in-law great comfort during their illness at the hospice and blessed my granddaughter as a 2-day-old infant when she was brought there to meet her great granda in his last days. It was a special blessing from a special human being."


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