The death took place recently of Mr. Joe Ruddy, Ballindine, Claremorris, and formerly of Derrycoosh, Castlebar. Joe was a native of Westport where his family lived at Church Lane. The Ruddys are a popular and respected Westport family.
Like many young people of his generation, Joe emigrated to England where he qualified as a radio officer with the Royal Air Force. He later worked on the development of the Sellafield reprocessing plant in Wales where he gained valuable experience, which stood to him in later life.
Returning to Ireland, Joe joined the staff of the ESB where he spent most of his working life. In this position he was popular with management and colleagues who admired his strong work ethic. Along with his colleagues, Joe was frequently called out in extreme weather conditions to restore power to thousands of households. This was always the first priority of ESB staff no matter how difficult the circumstances.
Joe was very active up to recent years when his health began to fail. However, he carried on with great determination and never complained. Joe was an expert in repairing electrical equipment and other household items. He approached his work in a meticulous fashion and no matter how difficult the problem Joe always did his best to solve it. It was often said of Joe that if a particular item could not be repaired, it was a lost cause. After his early retirement from the ESB, Joe operated a very successful car accessory, bicycle, lawnmower and chainsaw shop at Lower Charles Street, Castlebar. Joe was at all times very courteous in dealing with members of the public.
He was also an expert DIY person who made his own boats and trailers to the highest standards. Joe approached each job in a professional manner to ensure the finished product left nothing to be desired. Joe was a genuine craftsman who took immense pride in his work.
Joe's great passion in life was fishing, both sea and freshwater. Many's the fine summer day he spent fishing off the Mayo coast and on the lakes of the county. Joe was a man of infinite patience and was always proud to display his catch.
As befitted a man of his intellect, Joe loved to read books and newspapers, and kept up to date with current affairs, history and other matters of national and local interest.
Joe was also deeply involved in community affairs and was a founder member of Islandeady/Lough Mask group water scheme, Glenisland church restoration project and he played a prominent role in other local developments.
A former member of Westport Sea Angling/Boat Club, Joe was also involved in Castlebar Cycling Club, for whom he sponsored a number of prizes, and was a personal friend of Mickey Palmer, the famous Westport cyclist. As someone deeply interested in the farming community, Joe was closely associated with the Irish Farmers Association.
Most of all, Joe was a dedicated family man and was deeply interested in their progress and welfare, a model husband and father.
Joe was a most unassuming gentleman, always willing to lend a hand to those in need. Those who were privileged to know Joe Ruddy over the years regret the passing of one of nature's gentlemen, a genuinely good and decent person. May his noble soul rest in peace. Our deepest sympathy to his wife, family and other relatives.
He is sadly missed by his loving wife Kathleen; sons Patrick, Dublin, Joey, Dublin; daughters Marita Boxall, UK, Karina Anderson, UK, Ann Manchester, UK, Noreen Kearns, Castlebar; daughter-in-law Ann, sons-in-law Gerry, John, Tim, Colm; 12 grandchildren; sisters Liza Ruddy, Westport, Lorna Moon, Westport, Sheila Kilcoyne, Louisburgh, Caroline and Frances, Australia; brothers Val Ruddy, Westport, Tommy Ruddy, Ballaghaderreen; sisters-in-law, brothers-in-law, nephews, nieces and many other relatives and friends.
Removal took place from Careys Funeral Home, Ballindine, and Mass for the happy repose of Joe's soul was celebrated in the local church. Burial took place in the New Cemetery, Castlebar. On both days of the funeral services there were large attendances, including many of Joe's former colleagues in the E.S.B.