Plaque proposed in Cork city to honour much-loved Echo Boy 

Jeremiah Cronin, had a career spanning over 70 years, and was one of the most recognisable and beloved faces in Cork
Plaque proposed in Cork city to honour much-loved Echo Boy 

Echo Boy Jerry Cronin in his "office" inside the door of St Augustine's Church. Picture: Donncha Ó Caoimh/inphotos.org

A NORTHSIDE councillor is proposing a commemorative plaque to honour long-serving Echo Boy Jeremiah Cronin, who passed away last month at the age of 85.

Mr Cronin, who began selling newspapers at the age of 11, had a career spanning over 70 years, and was one of the most recognisable and beloved faces in Cork.

Sinn Féin councillor Mick Nugent is hoping the city can find a way to honour the memory of a man described by The Echo editor Maurice Gubbins as “a wonderful servant to our company and to the people of Cork for so many years”.

Mr Nugent told The Echo that Mr Cronin’s son Donal had approached him after a number of people had suggested a plaque should be placed on the Grand Parade to remember Mr Cronin.

“Jerry used to joke that he had the best office in the world, inside the door of St Augustine’s Church, and a plaque maybe on the wall of the church, or on the wall of one of the retail premises nearby, would be a good way to remember Jerry,” Mr Nugent said.

“I got an idea then that if there was an issue with those premises being private property, maybe something could be built into the pavement, and Donal thought that was a great idea.”

Jerry Cronin in his "office" inside the door of St Augustine's Church. Picture: Donncha Ó Caoimh/inphotos.org
Jerry Cronin in his "office" inside the door of St Augustine's Church. Picture: Donncha Ó Caoimh/inphotos.org

Mr Nugent said it would be fitting to remember someone who lived and breathed Cork all his life, and who was so much a part of the city.

“He was there for decades, and you would have thought that he would be there forever, and when he passed away there was just such a lovely response from everyone, I think it would be a nice gesture to mark his spot,” Mr Nugent said.

PERFECT PITCH

Donal Cronin told The Echo the pitch at St Augustine’s had been in his family for over 120 years, with Jerry inheriting it from his father, Patrick, and now Jerry’s son Glenn continues in the family trade.

“Imagine the knowledge that man had, the changes in Cork city he saw, as an Echo Boy and that’s what he was, he was always adamant: ‘I’m an Echo Boy, no matter what you say, I’m proud to be an Echo Boy.

“‘ The Echo has given me a good life, and only for The Echo my family wouldn’t be in the home they have.’ He’d never, ever give out about his job,” Donal Cronin said.

“Now, at times, don’t get me wrong, he’d give out about The Echo putting up the price of the papers, alright.”

Donal Cronin said a number of people had suggested to him that a small plaque could be erected to the memory of his father, and he said he liked Mr Nugent’s idea that it be put on a paving slab. “You’re talking about three generations of The Echo on the one spot, with my father there for 70 years, and it might be a nice thing to mark it. And if it doesn’t happen, sure what harm,” he said.

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