Tributes paid to former Mayoress of Lisburn city

Tributes have been paid to former Lisburn Mayoress

Mrs Irene Dillon , who

passed away last week.

Mrs Dillon, wife of Alderman Jim Dillon, died on Wednesday, January 15, and was buried following a service at St John’s Parish Church, Moira, on Friday, January 17.

Mrs Dillon was Mayoress from 2000 to 2002, when her husband Jim was Mayor.

Mr Dillon paid tribute to his wife of 45 years, describing her as “a great wife, mother and grandmother”.

“I’ll miss her terribly,” he said.

Mrs Dillon worked in insurance before the couple had their son Jeremy.

She then became a housewife and took care of the accounts for the family farm at Ballyknock Road.

“I always asked her for her advice but I didn’t always take it,” said Mr Dillon.

“She was a loyal woman who had no enemies and what a turnout she got at her funeral.”

Mr Dillon said his wife just loved spending time with her grandchildren Scott and Lucy in the caravan up at the North Coast. “She loved her family,” he said.

The Mayor of Lisburn, Councillor Margaret Tolerton, paid tribute to Mrs Dillon.

Speaking about Irene, the Mayor said: “On behalf of the Council I would like to convey deepest sympathies to Alderman Jim Dillon and his family at this time.

“Irene Dillon was a real lady and was always very supportive of Jim during his time on the Council.

“As Mayoress from 2000 to 2002 Irene conducted herself with dignity and made sure that everyone who visited the Mayor’s Parlour in both Hillsborough and Lagan Valley Island felt welcome.”

Mrs Tolerton continued: “Jim has many memories of his time with Irene including meeting Her Majesty the Queen, HRH Prince Andrew and also Lisburn being awarded city status.

“No matter what council engagement Jim was attending, if Irene was able to accompany him she did so willingly and the people of Lisburn were fortunate to have had the opportunity to meet such a lady who supported Jim.

“It is sad that someone we all knew well passed so quickly in the end and I am very glad that her family were with her as she was called home to our Lord. Jim and his family remain in the thoughts and prayers of both council staff and elected members,” she concluded.

The funeral service was led by the Rector Rev. Joanne Megarrell and funeral directed by Malcolmson’s Funeral Home in Lurgan.

Mr Dillon explained that his wife had requested the Lurgan firm as they had “done a great job” at her mother’s funeral 16 years ago.