Many years of service given to community
He is being remembered as a ‘‘good and decent man’’.
South Waikato District Councillor Barrie Herlihy JP died overnight last Tuesday in his Tokoroa home, after dedicating almost 50 years of service to the district.
Mr Herlihy was serving his first term as a councillor after having worked as its Civil Defence manager for many years and was the council representative for senior citizens and the youth council.
He had also worked as a taxi driver in Tokoroa for eight years and worked with emergency services and emergency management civil defence, leading him to serve as a principal rural fire officer.
His work also saw him help in the response to Cyclone Bola devastation on East Cape in March, 1988.
He was farewelled on Monday at Papa o te Aroha Marae in Tokoroa.
Fellow councillor and long-time confidante Lyn Corban said the 67 year old was the most gentle person she had ever met.
‘‘He was fair-minded, you would not find a more gentle person. He was a real passionate person. He had a lot of passion for youth and helping them. Barrie was just a good, decent man and very friendly.’’
Cr Corban’s sadness over the loss of her ‘‘mate’’ of 40 years was clear: ‘‘I am really going to miss him. I have known him since I have lived here, and I’ve lived here for almost 40 years. He was a support base both professionally and personally.
‘‘ He was very community minded, family oriented, a good keen man,’’ she said.
With his wife, Julie, he raised three sons, volunteered as a soccer coach, and was a member on school boards of trustees and parentteacher associations.
Mayor Neil Sinclair extended his condolences.
‘‘ Our heartfelt sympathy is extended to Cr Herlihy’s family at this sad time. As a past staff member and as a councillor, he was a well- known person in the community and will be sadly missed by many.’’
His passing is also being felt on the Youth Council and Tokoroa Senior Citizens where he was a council representative.
Tokoroa Senior Citizens centre manager Lynne Campbell said he would be missed.
‘‘He was one of those guys who you could talk to . . . He always tried to help.’’
The council’s community development manager Amanda Hema, who worked alongside Cr Herlihy on youth council activities, said his work with youth was commendable.
‘‘I can’t speak highly enough of Councillor Herlihy’s passion for the youth of this district.
‘‘It was never about him imparting his knowledge to the youth; it was more about him gaining enlightenment and feedback from them.’’
Under the Local Government Act there are several options as to how to treat the vacancy; this will be discussed at tomorrow’s council meeting.
PASSING: South Waikato District Councillor Barrie Herlihy JP passed away last week and is being remembered by family, friends and colleagues for his passionate and endearing nature.