The saddest announcement I'll ever make

Tony McCormack Senior passed away at 11:30am on Wednesday, December 13th, 2006, following a short illness.

He had been diagnosed with oesophageal cancer just four weeks previously, and told he had,perhaps, three months to live. In typical style, he was more concerned for the medical staff that had to break this sad news to him than he was for himself. He insisted on personally relaying the news to his family and friends, and then he put on his work clothes and went out to complete a paving job he'd started the week before.

He never complained; he never grumbled, but died with dignity and serenity surrounded by his wife, children, grandchildren and wider family.

He was my father, my business partner and my friend. I've spent over 40 years of my life on building sites with him and he taught me so much more than flagging, kerbing and block laying. He taught by example about integrity, about endeavour, and about what it means to be a true gentleman. He was universally respected and I never heard a bad word said about him. The world is a frighteningly poorer place without him.

Tony Senior and Tony Junior
Tony Senior and Tony Junior

Given just a few weeks to live, and aware of the inevitability that comes with this cancer, it would amuse him greatly to think that he got the job finished ahead of schedule.

Tony (Anthony Joseph) McCormack Senior : February 1934 - December 2006