August 29, 2017 12:37 pm
The first time we met Willie Duggan, he strode into our booth at Euroluce or some such fair. He was with Ellen, his wife, and they loved Rum and Coke (if I remember correctly). In fact, we’d never seen anyone drink Rum and Coke before, during and after dinner!
Willie was a large and tall man—though I remember he shared the trait so many tall men have, stooping slightly to allow more eye contact with the person opposite. He breathed a sense of tranquillity, and there was no cause to mistrust anything that came out of his mouth. Willie was an individual who understood what it meant to be humble, to start something from scratch and he was a man who loved life. Like many great Irishmen, he was a storyteller and could really spin a yarn. Willie had an endless bag full of anecdotes that kept us enthralled, related with charm and a twinkle in those kind blue eyes of his.
Willie’s respect for us as a young struggling lighting company was utmost—he never had anything but praise, often telling others how brilliant we were and what a great brand we would become. We listened and believed him completely, wishing for it to be true. Of course Willie was brilliant in his own right: an accomplished, hard-working, much respected and talented rugby union player. He was a larger-than-life character on and off the field, and with forty-one caps to his name, we know he made Ireland and his family proud. After his retirement from Rugby, Willie and his family went on to set up one of the best Lighting showrooms in Ireland, importing important Italian and Spanish brands. We were lucky enough to be one of them.
People like Willie, a distinguished man of principle, have great lives and forge great memories. He will always be in ours.
Our fondest love goes out to the Duggan family, to Ellen, Monica, Helena and Willie Jr.
William Patrick Duggan
March 12, 1950- August 28, 2017.
PICTURE 1 CREDIT: COLORSPORT/REX/SHUTTERSTOCK.
PICTURE 2 CREDIT:Inpho/Billy Stickland