Niall died a little while ago after a short illness.
I've been alternating all day between crying like a child and laughing like a loon, remembering some of the mad and excellent times we had, and knowing that his time was short.
Niall will probably be best remembered for his activities with Shell to Sea. But there were lots of worthy causes out there, from the environmental to deeply human issues and Niall immersed himself in many of them. In the ones where he couldn't create the time to help, he always found someone else who'd care, who'd help. To be in need and to contact him ensured at the very least that one wasn't alone.
To me, he was always a rogue. He'd persuade you of anything and he'd be there right beside you, to back you up, or he'd be running off ahead whilst you weighed the pros and cons.
I first met him in 2005, in a court in Ennis and he showed me, along with the others that day, that I should not fear the judiciary, the gardaí or indeed, my own heart.
I don't mean to paint the picture of a saint. Did he have flaws? God yes! And I loved each and every one of them.
So long buddy...