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LETTER TO THE EDITOR… From Francis O’Gorman

Hi Padraic,
Can I take this opportunity to say a quick farewell to those in the trade who I have met over the last forty-three years in my time with Michelin , Dunlop and Goodyear as I have not had time to contact everyone individually. I have had many messages of goodwill from the tyre business when my departure was announced and today, 23rd. July, is my final day on the job.

Francis O’Gorman pictured with Frank Byrne of Sandyford Tyres and John Corcoran of Healy Tyre & Service Centre at the Auto Trade Awards a few years ago. Please note that no alcohol was harmed in the making of this photograph.

It would be unfair to say that I had any kind of outstanding career, but as jobs go I am grateful that many customers made it easy for me and it never felt too much like hard labour. I remember a group of Michelin reps chatting one night in a bar in London and the topic came up about opening a tyre business. One honest chap put an end to all speculation by saying that if any of us were to open our own retail tyre business, then we would have to work!
I have admired more customers that they know as as I watched them built up their businesses through the years having to cope with staff issues, bad payers and unscrupulous opposition. I stood back in the comfort zone of the manufacturer and admired them as they engaged continuously to keep all the balls in the air, through good times and bad. I shouldn’t single anyone out, but If there is one legend, it is Brendan Brady in Arklow, a very special human being.
I had many easy, fun days where it seemed almost wrong to be receiving a salary, and the only bad days were when we lost someone. I am sure that the lovely man that was Enda Cantwell is in a special part of heaven.
There were many good nights, and one of the best nights was when myself, Jackie Wherity from Bridgestone and Martin O’Halloran from Pirelli had a great sing song together with others in the Abbey Hotel in Roscommon. That was a great golf day and night event for two charities in honour of the late Kevin O’Mahony of S-Tyres. Speaking of members of the opposition earlier, I should also mention the manufacturers legend that is Noel Hickey, now my fellow retiree.
I wish you all well in this uncertain post Covid era, thanks for everything to you all and thanks to Michelin, Dunlop and Goodyear who have treated me very well through the years with a special mention to the unknown people who administer and manage the pensions funds in all three companies.

Last little bit of advice, no matter how small an amount, make an AVC payment every month. Your older self will love you for it in time.
Take care and if anyone has time for a quick pint when in Dublin, drop me an email.

Thanks again agus slán go fóill.
Francis O’Gorman
franogorman57@gmail.com