Tributes paid to journalist David Morgan who has died aged 56

Journalist David Morgan, who has died aged 56
Paul Ainsworth

TRIBUTES have been paid following the death of a “gentleman” of journalism David Morgan.

The veteran reporter, who began his career in print before turning his talents to radio and television, passed away on Thursday night, aged 56, after battling ill health.

Former colleagues and family members have spoken of David’s “passion” for journalism.

Born in Toronto, Canada to parents who soon returned to their native north Belfast, David began his career as a reporter in the Irish News, before writing for publications including the Sunday World.

With a move to broadcasting he worked with BBC NI and UTV before finishing his career as news editor at Citybeat radio, now Q Radio, retiring in 2011.

Close friend and former colleague, UTV political editor Ken Reid, said David was an “old school” journalist who cared deeply about his craft.

“He had a meticulous attention to detail, and was a first class court and news reporter,” he said.

“Davy was also a really caring person, a true gentleman, and will be greatly missed by his colleagues, friends, and family.”

Irish News editor Noel Doran also paid tribute saying: “David was a highly respected journalist at all stages of his print and broadcasting career and was particularly well regarded during his time with The Irish News. Everyone at the paper sends their deepest sympathy to his family.”

Loved ones recalled with pride highlights of David’s career, in which he covered in-depth stories including the Drumcree parading dispute in the early 1990s.

His work also had a personal impact, with years spent covering the conflict in the north eventually leading to post-traumatic stress disorder.

David’s wife Tina passed away last year and their only son Richard, a reporter with BBC NI, spoke yesterday of the impact of losing his father.

“He gave everything to his family and was adored by his nieces and nephews. There is a great void now he is gone.”

Telling how his father inspired him to become a journalist he added: “Dad was an inspiration to me, despite him initially trying to talk me out of entering journalism due to the things he had seen in his time; he wanted to protect me from that.

“Yet I knew he loved it and seeing him doing something different every day made me want to do what he did.”

David will be buried at Milltown cemetery on Monday following 10am Requiem Mass at St Michael the Archangel Church in west Belfast.

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