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Bobby Aylward (second left) following his by-election victory in 2015. Eamonn Farrell/Photocall Ireland

Taoiseach leads tributes following death of former TD Bobby Aylward

The Kilkenny native was elected to the Dáil on three occasions.

TAOISEACH MICHEÁL MARTIN is leading the tributes after former Fianna Fáil TD Bobby Aylward died aged 67.

Aylward served as a TD for Carlow-Kilkenny from 2007 to 2011 and from 2015 to 2020, winning election to the Dáil on three separate occasions.

The Mullinavat native replaced his brother Liam who held a seat in the constituency for two decades before becoming an MEP.

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin said he was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of his Aylward, who he described as a “very good friend”.

“I am deeply saddened to learn of the death of my very good friend Bobby Aylward. Bobby was a deeply committed public representative,” Martin said.

“He was a proud Mullinavat man, rooted in his community, and personified the legendary spirit of his club, Ballyhale Shamrocks. This great sense of place gave Bobby a wonderful authenticity and made him the man he was.

On the council, and later as a national politician in Dáil Eireann, Bobby displayed an unending commitment to, and passion for, his constituents.

“He was tireless in his efforts to improve their lives and was continually advocating for them. Bobby continued the strong Aylward tradition of hard work, delivery and representation for his constituents and gave a tremendous amount to the people of Carlow Kilkenny over the years,” the Taoiseach added.

Before being elected to the Dáil, Aylward served on Kilkenny County Council from 1992 to 2007.

After losing his Dáil seat in 2011 Aylward was re-elected in a by-election in 2015, on the same day as the Marriage Equality Referendum, and subsequently re-elected in the general election of 2016.

Aylward is survived by his wife, two sons and one daughter.

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