Eugene  Gillespie an Appreciation.

The 22nd September 2012, will be a date etched in our minds forever. It was this day that we lost a Club Member, a Gaelgoir, a Gentleman and most of all a True Friend. Eugene was known country wide and  further afield for his exploits in Vintage car circles, he was a member of many  old-car clubs but his heart was with the Connacht Veteran & Vintage Motor  Club where he had been a member from the early days.

Retirement gave Eugene a new lease of life and let him concentrate  on his main interest, Vintage and Classic cars. Eugene had a love for old  Jaguars and had several examples; in addition he had a 1931 Morris Minor called “PJ”.  Having gone to the Gordon  Bennett Rally for the last 10 or 12 years, Eugene always hankered after an  earlier car. This dream came true a couple of years ago with the purchase of an  Austin 16/6. It was this car that he was restoring when he met his untimely end. His involvement with the  Connacht Veteran & Vintage Motor Club included a stint at Hon Secretary but  most people would have known him, as he was for the last number of years, our Main Rally Secretary.

As a native Irish speaker he had the ability to draw “an Cupla focail” out of people, even those who didn’t know they had it. His phone was  always answered “As Gaeilge”  with ”Go Maith Dia Duith, is mise, Eoghan MacGilloa Easpaig, Conas ata Tu?”, this  often brought out a couple of sentences of Irish, much to his delight. Last year  TG4 filmed a documentary on Eugene that concentrated solely on the social side  of his life this is a fitting tribute to the Real Eugene  Gillespie.

He will be remembered for his wide smile, friendly demeanour,  kindly manner and the twinkle in his eye. Eugene is survived by his partner  Joan, sisters Elizabeth and Patsy and brother Brian, nieces and nephews,  neighbours and wide circle of friends and of course his dog  Tiny.

Ar Dheis De Go Raibh A Anam. 

This tribute was written by Keith English, CVVMC member and close friend of the late Eugene Gillespie.