Northern Ireland news

Paddy Reynolds, former Irish Press northern editor, died peacefully in north Belfast home

Former northern editor of the Irish Press, Belfast man Paddy Reynolds signs copies of his book 'The Late Paddy Murphy' at Waterstones bookshop. Picture by Brendan Murphy

PADDY (Pat) Reynolds, who rose to become Irish Press northern editor during his eventful and distinguished journalism career, has died at his north Belfast home.

Mr Reynolds died "peacefully" on Saturday at the house on Upper Cavehill Road "surrounded by his loving family".

He had recounted details of his five-decade long career as a journalist - which included a stint working for the Daily Mail, in in entertaining 2004 book `The Late Paddy Murphy: Memoirs of an Irish Journalist'.

Starting as a boy growing up in the Cregagh area of east Belfast, the memoir spanned his early days in the city during World War Two, through his Dublin years when he held the 'safest seat' in the Dail, to the beginning of the end of the Troubles.

It revealed "the thrill of the chase for that elusive headline story while recounting his own descent into the thralls of alcoholism" and among the great and teh good featured were Eamon de Valera and Ian Paisley, Brendan Behan and Myles na Gopaleen.

In one entertaining portion, he introduces Paddy Murphy, who also worked for the Irish Press Group in the 1960s, fling from Belfast in the early days of the Troubles.

His bosses were so impressed they called him down to Dublin, to give him a staff job, causing a conundrum for fellow Press journalist Reynolds, who had invented Murphy in order to earn two salaries and cashing the second pay cheques through a friendly bookmaker.

A few days later Murphy had `died of a heart attack' leaving Mr Reynolds to use all his inventiveness to stop his editor travelling north for the funeral.

He also recounted how his beloved late wife Enda sent him for a medical which would save his life by seeing him referred to a treatment centre and had been teetotal so long her "could swim in it".

After the publication his journalist daughter Pauline Reynolds said "the book inspired many former colleagues to renew acquaintance and he's thrilled to bits to see them again".

Mourners will gather at 10am on Thursday for Requiem Mass in St. Therese of Lisieux Church on Somerton Road, with daughters Anne, Pauline, Joanie and Colette asking for donations in lieu of funeral flowers to Dementia NI.

Burial afterwards will be in Carnmoney Cemetery

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