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In memory of Thomas Bracken


Tommy was born in Belfast, and as a young man of 17 he joined the Merchant Navy which took him around the world. When he returned home, he got a job working with city Bus in Belfast and his love for driving began.

He met Eileen at the famous local dance hall called ‘The Plaza’ and they married soon after. As this was uncertain times with the outbreak of ‘The troubles’, they moved out of Belfast and moved to Craigavon. In 1972, tragedy struck his family when his daughter, Annamarie sadly died at the age of 7. She was the eldest of 4 children.

Tommy got a job with Sureline, a Lurgan bus company and he quickly became a favourite with the school children of Derrymacash and Derrytrasna who nicknamed him Casey. He worked there for serval years and when Sureline stopped operating he got his HGV license doing cross channel work in the lorry. Finally, before retiring, he purchased a bus and became his own boss, still maintaining his love for driving. His knowledge of the roads both near and far was second to none. We never had to worry about getting lost as he was always looking out for us and giving directions at any time of the day or night. We had our very own St. Christopher.

Tommy was a big sports fan. He supported Liverpool & Celtic but his favourite was horses. He loved to have a wee bet and enjoyed the odd win but the thrill of watching them was his real enjoyment.

It was his love for his family and grandchildren that kept him going. He loved the craic and messing around with the grandchildren and at many a family gathering, you would find him hiding around the corner having a sneaky smoke. Everyone knew that he was smoking!

In later years with his health deteriorating, you could see things changing with Tommy. He struggled to do the things that he loved. He stopped driving, and you could see that it annoyed him but he still had a smile and a pleasant word for everyone.   Things became almost unbearable in the last few months but you would never have heard Tommy complain or say he was in pain, he didn’t want to be a burden.

Tommy was a generous, friendly and kind-hearted man and his love for Eileen and his family shone through right to the end.

Thomas Bracken reflection Large Web view




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