Tributes made to ‘passionate’ agricultural politician Seymour Crawford

Tributes have been paid to former Fine Gael TD and former chairman of the National Livestock Committee of the Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA), Seymour Crawford.

The 74-year-old – who was a TD for the constituency of Cavan-Monaghan from 1992-2011 and was also a member of Monaghan County Council for over a decade – passed away at Cavan General Hospital over the weekend (Saturday, October 20).

Having served as a high-ranking member of the IFA throughout the 1980s, many high-profile dignitaries have commemorated the well-respected politician’s passion for agriculture.

Passion For Agriculture

An Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, said that it was “with great sadness” that he learned of the passing of his former party colleague.

“Seymour served his constituency of Cavan-Monaghan and his country in the Dail for nearly 20 years.

Passionate on so many issues from agriculture to education, Seymour played a crucial role in the work of the British Irish Inter-Parliamentary Body during one of the most important periods of the Peace Process, bringing his unique perspective to the table as the only Ulster Protestant member of the Oireachtas delegation.

“On a personal note, I had the privilege of working alongside Seymour during his final term in the Dail, and I know that I wasn’t the only member of the current Government to listen and learn from him prior to his retirement in 2011.

“My thoughts are with his family at this very sad time. May he rest in peace,” he said.

John Bruton, former Fine Gael Taoiseach, said: “Seymour Crawford had a deep interest in agriculture, and he brought into politics the practical approach he had learned as a farmer, and as a vice-president of the Irish Farmers’ Association.”

‘Enormous Contribution’

Mairead McGuinness, MEP and first Vice-President of the European Parliament, said the late politician made an “enormous contribution” to Irish public life.

Coming from an agricultural background and having served as chairman of the livestock committee of the IFA, he had a very deep knowledge of the importance of farming to rural Ireland.

“This later served him in a very successful political career that spanned decades, bringing to national attention the issues of concern to his community.

“And being a border county man and of the Presbyterian faith, he had particular insights and understanding that he used to very great effect at a crucial time during the peace process.

On a personal level, he was one of the finest people anyone could meet, something that no doubt contributed to his stellar political success.

“He will be sadly missed,” said McGuinness, expressing her deepest sympathies to his family and friends.