Who was he?  What was he like?

Joe O'Reilly was a special man. He lived many lives. He was many people for many different people.

While his life was rich, he liked things simple and straight forward...though he was anything but  a simple man.

He was a realist who learned so much and taught others so much...

He was always learning. He learned as an apprentice and he apprenticed others.
He had a rare gift for learning from and with others: at school, in clubs, at work...
...yet he was not a conformist, he cut his own path.
He liked what he liked and he was comfortable to hold a separate view. He never felt the need to follow the crowd...he often led.

Studious and hard-working , he was reliable and could be serious when he needed to be...

He believed in the future, technology, the arts, music and natural beauty - he loved sports.
He taught art to a daughter, computer skills to one son and golf to another.
He treated everyone individually and really understood how special each individual person can be. He realised who we each are and he touched people. He was a true communicator.

He was a craftsman, in the Dental Hospital but also in the way he approached his tools:
his camera, his computer, his mobile phone which went everywhere with him.
He often had the mastery of something new...
...first with new computer, the latest printer, a lens, a gadget or...an idea.

Joe had many associations, friends, clubs and many interests.
A Tai-chi student, Eucharistic Minister, web site designer, skilled in materials technology and metallurgy, a weightlifter....he was a natural sketch artist...

He devoted himself to the Genealogical Society and to researching family trees and the family history of others, discovering the past.
It appealed to his love of research, computer science and to helping others.
He helped so many to discover their personal history and find themselves in the process.

He loved the South Chapel. He edited the weekly parish newsletter here as well as being Curator of Records.  He digitised the archives and managed the website.
He even repainted the nativity set you see here in front of you, in his garage one year.
I remember the cow!

He loved his faith, he loved Cork and he loved his family. To them he was reliable, steady and selfless. The centre of the family, an organiser and leader.

His life went through many phases and countries...

He began in Cork, part of a large Cork family, he loved Cork and was at home here always.
These were his streets...

An early life in Cork at the North Mon , he thought of a life in the priesthood...later working with his father in Cork as a young man in the family dental practice...he then moved to Youghal and began a young family...and spent a brief time in the RAF...

Joe spent the swinging 60's and early 70's in New York where he joined his brothers and sisters.
He loved his new interests such as US politics, making pancakes, DIY - and in particular wood panelling...and sideburns, hibachi cooking, flared trousers and camping which he added to his list and took back to Ireland...
He was convinced that flared trousers would make a come back....

He returned to Ireland where he worked at the North Infirmary and UCC teaching dental students and being part of the university faculty.

He loved working with his hands.
He had many strong beliefs and one of them was the importance of creating something with your hands, he was always creating things with his hands.
He had great hands...

He was as funny as he was skilful, always learning, happy in many roles as husband, father brother, uncle, granddad and friend.

He never judged others...

Always caring for others and in different ways. He was quick to introduce himself to new people
... if he was here today he might be introducing himself to you.

He loved life.

He was proud of his life's interests, proud of his family and friends, proud of those he touched and proud FOR all of us

Joe O'Reilly was a special man. He lived many lives. He was many people for many different people.

His thoughts are with us and FOR us all today...and in the future.

This I know for sure.

Kevin O'Reilly  (on behalf of the O'Reilly family) 

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