Dublin City Councillors unanimously passed a motion to rename a park in Dublin after Boyzone member Stephen Gately, who died back in 2009.
The proposal to rename Royal Canal Linear Park after Gately was put forward by Independent councillors Christy Burke and Anthony Flynn at this Tuesday’s Central Area Committee meeting.
Burke said the decision would now go before the city council in the coming days, and told the Irish Times why it’s significant.
“Stephen meant so much to the people of the area. He was a local lad made big and he never forgot that.” he said.
Stephen Gately’s mother, Margaret, gave her blessing for the park name change to occur, and said she’d love for it to happen. Margaret still lives in Sheriff Street, where the singer grew-up. His father Martin unfortunately passed away three years ago.
Several Boyzone members also celebrated the announcement, with Ronan Keating tweeting that: “It would be just amazing to keep Stephen’s memory alive forever. Well done Dublin Council.”
This fills me with such joy. Thank you to everyone that got behind this. https://t.co/nyAqANq83p
— Ronan Keating (@ronanofficial) September 7, 2020
Similarly, Keith Duffy said on Instagram that it was “a beautiful way to remember the legend of Stephen Gately.” He later went on to the Ray D’Arcy show, where he spoke highly of Gately.
“I try so much in everything I do to try and keep the memory of Stephen alive,” Duffy said. “He died way too young, he was only coming into his own. He was such a great, great talent.”
Gately unfortunately passed away at the age of 33 in his Majorca home from pulmonary oedema, a build-up of fluid in the lungs, resulting from an undiagnosed heart condition.
Gately was a trailblazer and came out as gay back in 1999 after discovering a friend of his was going to sell the story to the press. He famously told the Sun: “I’m gay and in love.”
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