The family of Cookstown chef Brian McGinn who died after being struck by a red Mercedes as he walked home on Monday night, are “devastated” by his death.
The 57-year-old was head chef at the Mill Wheel Bar on the Dunnamore Road, but had previously worked at the Royal Hotel, The Braeside Restaurant, Glenavon and Greenvale Hotels.
A member of the McGinn family said they were “devastated” by the passing of the well loved grandfather and “great chef” who was “well known” around town, while tributes have poured in for the “lovely man” who was the “heart and soul” of his workplace.
Brian leaves behind his wife Shelagh, sons Mark and Paul, daughter-in-law Brenda and grandchildren Aodhan and Eimhear.
And was the son of Pat and Peggy and brother to Patricia, Danny, Charlie, Leo, Aidan, Mark, Peter and Ann.
Funeral arrangements have yet to be made, but the family is asking for donations in lieu of flowers to go to Friends of Cancer.
Brian was walking along the Lissan Road when he was struck by a car at around 11.45pm on September 7 and police are appealing for witnesses to the incident.
Especially the driver of a dark Volkswagen car which is thought to have passed the scene just moments before.
Mill Wheel Manager Raymond Loughran told the Mail it was “a terrible shock” for everyone at the bar when they found out Brian had died.
“Everybody is just in total shock,” he said, “our own staff and the whole community because he was the heart and soul around here.
“Everyone was very fond of him, fond of the craic and the food.”
The community has also been posting messages of sympathy to the “lovely man” and his family on the website for McAtee Funeral Directors.
One said: “It was a honour to know him and may he rest in peace.”
Another added: “Brian was a lovely person..true gentleman and will be sadly missed…many a nights crack John and I enjoyed with Brian McGinn. May he rest in peace xx”
Others expressed their shock and devastation at the tragic news.
“Such a nice guy. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends at this sad time,” a well-wisher said.
UUP MLA Sandra Overend and UUP Councillor Trevor Wilson have both expressed their sympathies to Brian’s family and friends.
“I was incredibly saddened to learn of the death of a man in Cookstown on Monday night,” Mrs Overend said.
“Councillor Wilson added: “My thoughts and prayers are with everyone involved in this tragic accident.”
DUP MLA Ian McCrea said: “It was with profound sadness that I learned of the news of this fatal road accident on the Lissan Road. I extend my sincere sympathy to the entire family circle at this difficult time.”