The comedian Brendan Grace, 68, who was shown in Dublin last October with his wife Eileen, fought against lung cancer
Tributes are paid today to Fr. Ted star Brendan Grace after his death at the age of 68 after a & # 39; mighty & # 39; fight with lung cancer.
The comedian and singer – who played malicious Father Fintan Stack in the 90s, Channel 4 sitcom, and was known for his character & # 39; Bottler & # 39; in his school hat, blazer and shorts – was treated in the hospital for pneumonia when he was diagnosed with the cancer.
Grace from Dublin – who had four children and lived in West Palm Beach, Florida with his wife Eileen – died in the early morning hours.
He died today at 12.26, surrounded by his family, after being diagnosed with cancer ten days ago, his manager said.
One of those honors was comedian Brendan O & # 39; Carroll from Mrs. Brown & # 39; s Boys, who said: & # 39; So sad at the death of a great comedy legend, husband and father Brendan Grace.
& # 39; He opened doors for so many of us and leaves behind a legacy of love and laughter that will echo through this land and we will all mourn for his death. Rest easy Bottler, you deserve it. & # 39;
Grace played evil Father Fintan Stack in the classic 1990s, Channel 4 sitcom, Father Ted
He added: & # 39; This is a terrible sad day for Brendan's family, friends and many fans worldwide. Brendan was a kind giant of a man and a true giant of comedy.
& # 39; He opened so many doors for entertainers and was the first and most sustainable cartoonist in Ireland. He leaves a space in Irish comic history that nobody will ever fill. A unique artist and a brilliant hilarious man. A true son of liberties. & # 39;
Irish President Michael D Higgins said that he had heard Grace's death with great sorrow.
& # 39; As a comedian, Brendan & # 39; s spontaneous humor and his sense of timing, his obvious joy in interacting with his audience, meant that Brendan & # 39; s sense of humor exhausted, and himself made a deep contribution to, the deep source of Irish humor, & # 39; he said .
& # 39; It was a privilege to know him, and it was a pleasure to meet Brandaan so recently on June 5, when he accompanied the Forget-Me-Nots choir to a garden party in Aras an Uachtarain.
& # 39; As President of Ireland, I express my deep condolences to his wife and children, to his broader family and friends, and to all who appreciated his acumen and a keen sense of humor. & # 39;
Taoiseach Leo Varadkar paid homage to Twitter and wrote: & RIP Brendan Grace, an Irish comic legend. You have made us laugh so many times, from Bottelaar to Father Ted and so many others. One of the big ones. Our thoughts are with Brendan & # 39; s friends and family. & # 39;
Family friend Ciarán Ó Raghallaigh added: & He fought with all his might and had the family close to him, smiling and reminiscent, but Brendan Grace finally collapsed this morning. Rest in Peace Bottler. & # 39;
Grace made his name on stage with characters such as the cheeky schoolboy Bottler
Grace (pictured right last October), who had been in hospital in Ireland and stayed there for treatment, has faced several major health fights in recent years
Tom Kelly, Grace's manager, for 27 years, spoke about Virgin Media One & Ireland: AM program, said that the death of the entertainer is a big loss for Ireland.
& # 39; Although he was aware of the outcome the last few days when the cancer was diagnosed, it is a big shock to everyone & he said today.
& # 39; He was very weak, he didn't want chemo or anything like that, and the inevitable happened. He was one of the big ones in modern entertainment, it's a big loss. & # 39;
The mayor of Dublin, Paul McAuliffe, opened a book of condolences to the residents of the city to show their respect.
Thousands of messages have been posted by fans online and remember fond memories of watching Grace with their family, calling him a & # 39; legend of the Irish comedy & # 39 ;.
Lorraine Hales tweeted: & # 39; So sad to hear the news that Brendan Grace has passed. A comedic childhood legend that we brought our own children. & # 39;
Another fan wrote: & # 39; I am so sorry to hear that Brendan Grace lost his fight against cancer. My sympathy for his family, friends and everyone who mourns his passing. Rest in peace. Your job is over. Thank you for the entertainment and pleasure. & # 39;
Dee Forbes, director general of the Irish state channel RTE, said: & We are deeply saddened to hear that Brendan Grace has passed away. Brendan was one of the originally funny Dutchmen and a true pioneer in the Irish comedy.
& # 39; Although there are now many Irish comedians who are famous names, Brendan emerged as a talent at a time when there were very few established Irish comedians.
& # 39; Through its live shows, live recordings, The Brendan Grace Show and many memorable guest appearances on RTE & # 39; s Late Late Show, Brendan settled in the heart of generations of fans, not just in Ireland, but all over the world .
& # 39; Importantly, he also paved the way for many of the great comedians that this country has produced over the last 20 years or so and leaves a legacy that he and his family can be proud of.
& # 39; He will be deeply missed. My thoughts and those of his many friends and fans about RTE are with his family and friends in this sad time. & # 39;
It was revealed last week that Grace had fought for his life in the hospital after being diagnosed with lung cancer.
Grace, who was in the hospital in Ireland, where he was being treated, had been confronted with several major health conflicts in recent years.
This included when he was diagnosed with diabetes in 2009 and eventually lost two of his toes due to a gangrene caused by the condition.
Then he had a stroke in 2015, followed by a bad fall, saying that he often looked like he was under the influence.
Grace spoke last year about the consequences of his health problems in an RTE documentary, but his problems had not stopped him so far.
When he spoke about his wife of more than 45 years old during the program, called & # 39; Brendan Grace: Funny Man & # 39 ;, he said: & # 39; My very best friend is Eileen.
& # 39; There is nothing that I would not do for her and there is nothing that she would not do for me, and it has been that way for the past 45 years. Do nothing for each other. & # 39;
Grace made his name on stage with characters such as the cheeky schoolboy Bottler.
He also wrote comedy versions of songs, including a bilingual version of Tom Jones & # 39; s Delilah, which includes the famous line & # 39; so before they take down the dora & # 39; s & # 39; s is included.
But he became really famous thanks to his role as Father Stack in Father Ted in & # 39; New Jack City & # 39 ;, the ninth installment of series two of the 1996 comedy.
Father Stack was an unpleasant and rude priest who was sent to the parochial home to replace Father Jack when the latter & # 39; Hairy Hands Syndrome & # 39; rose.
Father Ted star Pat Laffan (left), who played the milkman Pat Mustard, died at the age of 79 in March, while Frank Kelly (right), who played the foul father Jack, died in February 2016 at the age of 77
Grace and his wife had four children – Amanda, 43, living in Ireland, Melanie, 40 and Bradley, 37, living in Boston, and Brendan Patrick, 34, who is in New York.
He also had three grandsons, with Brendan Patrick with Aidan, ten, and Melanie with two sons, James, 11, and Patrick, nine.
The cancer diagnosis came just four months after the death of Grace & # 39; s colleague Father Ted-star Pat Laffan at the age of 79 in March.
Laffan originally had an audition for the role of Father Stack, but it was given to Grace – and Laffan was cast instead as milkman Pat Mustard.
And February 2016 saw the death of Frank Kelly, the actor who played the filthy, alcoholic Father Jack, 77 years old.
Dermot Morgan, who played father Ted, died in March 1998 at the age of 45 after a heart attack in London, just one day after recording the final episode of the show.
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