A FORMER Mayor in Bantry who championed an obese man’s right to live with dignity said she is sorry to hear of his passing.
Richard – better known as ‘Ritchie’ – Doyle was 42st when the former Fianna Fáil councillor, Kathleen Tessyman, began campaigning in 2013 to improve his living conditions.
Kathleen said: ‘I remember the first time I called to his house – an apartment at the rear of George’s Lane – and saw him lying on the floor with the oxygen tube in his mouth and feeling absolutely shocked.
‘He was forced to sleep on the ground, partly because of his weight, but also because of the unduly narrow staircase in his house. We did all the papers and all the radio stations at the time, to no avail. He should have got help when he needed it because no one should have to live like that.’
‘He was a very nice person to talk to,’ added Kathleen, who expressed her sympathy to Ritchie’s father Martin, his mother Bridget, and his sons Richard and Robert, following his death on Sunday, June 26th last.
Ritchie is being buried in his native Dublin, and had been taken to Cork University Hospital a few weeks ago after collapsing at his home at George’s Row.
Kathleen said: ‘It is sad that he was in hospital for a few weeks on a life support machine before he died. I always believed that if he had somewhere better to live, it would have given him the incentive he needed.’