Father Tom Ryan, who has died at 86, served for 40 years in parishes in the north and south of the Middlesbrough diocese.
Born in Caherconlish, County Limerick, he attended St Patrick’s Seminary in Thurles, where he was a sporting all-rounder – playing hurling and handball and taking part in All Ireland colleges’ sports at weight-throwing.
He cycled ten miles to school and back every day, milking the cows before and afterwards.
Ordained a priest in September 1956, he served first as a curate at St Peter’s, South Bank, from 1956 to 1961, and continued as a curate at
Corpus Christi Church in Hull, from 1961 to 1965, then at St Patrick’s Church in Middlesbrough from 1965 to 1971.
In 1971 he became parish priest at St Patrick’s in Hull, where he remained until 1990, becoming parish priest of St Joseph’s and St Cuthbert’s in Loftus until his retirement in 1996, at which point he returned to Caherconlish.
He is survived by sisters Anna and Catarina. He was predeceased by his brothers Michael, Father Dick, Denis and Sister Mary Colette.