The late Frank McGovern (90) will be remembered as a much-respected gentleman who was generous with his time and knowledge.

Frank, a popular community pharmacist for more than 45 years in Enniskillen, died unexpectedly on Thursday, January 12.

Leading tributes, his family remembered Frank as a man who was dedicated to his family and always put them first.

Speaking on behalf of the family circle, and recalling her father’s early life, daughter Susan said: “Daddy was the youngest of a large family, born to William and Mary-Kate McGovern (née McManus) in July, 1932.

“He grew up in the townland of Drumanymore, Teemore, and was predeceased by his older siblings. He was a member of the victorious Teemore Shamrocks team that won the 1959 Fermanagh Junior Football Championship.”

She continued: “For his education, he attended Drumanymore Primary School in Teemore before continuing his education at Belturbet Technical College, where he studied a year-long course in carpentry. He then progressed to St. Michael’s College, then run by the Presentation brothers at its Belmore Street site.”

After he completed his Highers, he continued his education at the School of Pharmacy in Belfast, and upon graduating he worked at the National Pharmacy, High Street, Enniskillen under the mentorship of Miss Patricia McHenry.

He continued working there, and as his career as a pharmacist advanced, he took over the business following Miss McHenry’s retirement.

Dedicated service

Following 45 years of dedicated service delivering pharmaceutical services to the community, he retired at 70, in 2002.

Speaking about their father’s role in the community, Susan said: “People went to see daddy as a pharmacist, but also as a listening ear. He was helpful to people on all sorts of advice.”

Frank was a family man and a community man at heart, and gave generously of his time, particularly through his work with the Fermanagh Voluntary Association of the Disabled.

Of this association, Susan explained: “He was a founder member and director, serving with it from its inception in 1965 until he was 88, and stepping down in 2020.”

Frank also served on the Board of Governors of St. Michael’s College during the time of the school’s major extension in the early 1990s.

In addition, Susan explained: “He was an avid reader, very widely read, and he was really interested in the world around him.”

In 1961, Frank married Imelda Gannon and they settled at the Sligo Road in Enniskillen where they had five children.

Continuing to speak on behalf of the family, Susan described their late father as a devoted dad.

“Daddy was dedicated to our upbringing – he wanted us to be happy, confident children and he wanted the best for us, and did everything he could for us. He was very generous, kind and empathetic.”

Frank was a proud grandfather, and great-grandfather, with Susan describing him as a man who “always put his family first”.

The McGovern family wishes to express their gratitude for all of those who cared for and supported Frank in his later years.

Community tributes came from Teemore Shamrocks GFC. A spokesperson for the club said: “Our club is deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Frank McGovern, Enniskillen, and the last of a dynasty of McGoverns in Drumanymore.

“Along with his late brother, Hugh, Frank formed part of our famous 1959 Junior Championship-winning team which was the resurrection of Teemore Shamrocks again becoming a force in Fermanagh football. After his retirement from football, his absolute support and love for the Shamrocks never diminished.”

The Requiem Mass for Frank McGovern took place on Sunday, January 15. The celebrant was Fr. Alwill, with members of Teemore Shamrocks forming a Guard of Honour. The funeral director was Pat Blake.

Frank is survived by his wife, Imelda; their children, Susan, Mary, Brian, Frances and Donal; and the extended family circle.

His Month’s Mind Mass will be celebrated at St. Michael’s Church, Enniskillen on Sunday, February 12 at noon.