Jimmy Clifford: 'Mr Creggan' was dedicated public servant and family man
JIMMY Clifford was described as 'Mr Creggan' during a long career of public service in his native Derry.
Born on Bridge Street in the city centre, Jimmy lived in Creggan most of his life and spent 27 years standing up for the community as an SDLP councillor, before his retirement in 2015.
He was a familiar face on the bus each day as he travelled in to the city to carry out council and constituency work, or simply spend time with friends.
Jimmy was a massive Derry City and Liverpool fan and had an encyclopaedic knowledge of football, fuelled by reading half a dozen newspapers each day.
He was also a dedicated volunteer with the Society of Vincent de Paul and in the parish of St Mary's.
SDLP leader and Foyle MP Colum Eastwood said he worked hard every day for the people of Creggan and Derry, "making big sacrifices and always putting the interests of the people he represented before his own".
"He was part of a generation of community leaders who saw injustice and refused to look the other way.
“He stood with John Hume in some of the most difficult days of our peace process, even when doing so meant he became a target for intimidation, threats and violence. There’s nothing that would have stopped him."
He said he hoped his family now "find comfort in the immense good that he did throughout his life and the many people he helped”:
MLA Mark H Durkan also paid tribute to "my mentor and my mucker", saying he was a "warrior" who was was "still out pounding the streets for the SDLP into his 80s".
“His devotion to public service was matched only by his devotion to his family. He has been heartbroken since the passing of his beloved Patsy but I know how much he loved his daughters and how proud he was of them and his grandchildren".
Jimmy Clifford died aged 84 on October 1. He is survived by his daughters Martina, Annmarie, Patricia and Roisin and family circle.