Mr. Hugh Maxwell

MR. Hugh Maxwell, of Ballyhornan Road, Downpatrick, who died in the Downe Hospital last week, was an extremely popular and respected figure who had a deep affection for Downpatrick and Lecale.

Mr. Maxwell, who was 77, was a member of a well known Downpatrick family. One of nine children, he was born in Saul Street and reared in Edward Street. He began his working career in the Post Office where his outgoing nature, kindness and consideration for others were given ample outlet.

His marriage to his wife Elisabeth, who came from a farming background, led to a career change. He became a farmer and adapted easily to country life.

He was a loving husband, a devoted father to Robert and Heather, and later, a doting grandfather. He took great delight in his family and was rightly proud of their achievements.

He had deeply held Christian convictions and a was loyal member of Dunsford Parish Church where he served as a warden and as a member of the select vestry for many years.

Rarely without a smile, he was widely known and would take the time to stop for a friendly chat and a laugh with his many friends, who came from all sections of the community.

Mr. Maxwell suffered from heart problems for the last 20 years of his life, but, typically, he made light of his own misfortune and always showed concern for others who he felt were less fortunate than himself.

He was deeply committed to the Downe Hospital, particularly the coronary care unit, which he said had saved his life on a number of occasions. He campaigned for the retention of local hospital services and a new Downe Hospital.

The funeral service last Saturday was one of the largest ever seen in Dunsford Parish Church. The service was conducted by Dean Henry Hull, rector, and the Rev. Graham Savidge. Prayers at the graveside in the adjoining churchyard were led by Mr. Maxwell’s son-in-law, the Rev. Gary Galway.

Mr. Maxwell is survived by his wife Elisabeth, children Robert and Heather, daughter-in-law Lynda, son-in-law Gary, grandchildren Laura, Gareth, Jonathan and Rebecca, brothers Billy, Norman and Cecil, and sisters Eileen and Margaret. He was predeceased by his brother Eric and sisters Amy and Betty.