A friend of the man whose dead body was brought into a Carlow Post Office in an apparent attempt to claim his pension has reacted with disgust after the event was depicted in at least two St Patrick’s Day parades last week.
In January, Peadar Doyle’s body was allegedly taken into a Post Office in Carlow by two men who then asked for his pension. Witnesses say staff became concerned about his health and the two men fled - leaving his body on the ground. Gardaí were called and Mr Doyle was pronounced dead at the scene. One man has since been charged.
Former local councillor Walter Lacey said parades goers’ decision to re-enact the event had been “so offensive, so hurtful” and that Mr Doyle had been a true gentleman who deserved better:
“I was extremely disappointed,” he told Lunchtime Live.
“It was brought to my attention that two parades - and possibly more - in Belmullet, Co. Mayo and Kilfenora in Co. Clare made a complete mockery of a local Carlow man, Peadar Doyle, who passed away in January.
“There were strange circumstances in relation to his passing and they imitated that and thought it was a very funny thing that they would do.
“But it was so offensive, so hurtful, so thoughtless it has generated a huge outcry here in Carlow and beyond… I was personally furious.
“I know Peadar; Peadar Doyle was a true gentleman, a decent man, a proud Carlowian and he lived in what we call the heart of old Carlow.
“He was a painter and decorator by trade and not one person you would find would have a wrong word to say about Peadar.
“And I think for his passing and his death - although there were strange circumstances - to be depicted at St Patrick’s Day - it’s just not on. It’s so offensive.”
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He added that by re-enacting the event, parade goers had most likely upset the staff at the Post Office and Mr Doyle’s family - all of whom found the incident extremely traumatic:
“When you mentioned the Post Office, can I just acknowledge the hurt that they must be feeling also that this has been raised again at this particular time because they dealt very well with the terrible situation at the time and it was very traumatic for them.
“And the family are only coming to terms with his loss and the circumstances that did follow it. But the inclusion of these items has brought it all back to the family.”
He has contacted the organisers of both parades and has asked them to apologise for the hurt caused by the depictions:
“They just ignored all the contact,” he continued.
“Maybe they’re nervous of responding but all I ask for - very politely, explaining how we felt - was an apology for the family because the family are traumatised again… And the people in Mayo and Clare just need to do the right thing.”
Main image: Parade participants.