dr Vicky Conway, Associate Professor of Law at Dublin City University and civil rights activist, has been described as “a dynamo of change that she wanted to see every day”.
During a public service at Temple Hill Funeral Home, Boreenmanna Road, Co Cork, Dr. Conway will be remembered today as a “truly loyal friend, beautiful and beloved daughter, sister and aunt”.
dr Conway was a former member of the Policing Authority and the Commission on the Future of Policing.
She was also the presenter of the ‘Policyd in Ireland’ podcast, which was very critical of some of the Garda’s behaviour.
She was a member of the Lawyers for Choice group, which campaigned to repeal the Eighth Amendment prohibiting abortion, and has hosted many marginalized groups on her podcast.
Her brother Bryan said Vicky has done more in “42 years than most people would do in 10 lifetimes given the chance”.
“Her sense of social justice was too strong to hold back. She was pretty strong and stubborn for those of you who know her,” he said.
“She felt a great need to fight for those marginalized by inequality and that’s something you can respect and be proud of.
“But there was another side to Vicky, the side that saw beauty in absolutely everything.
“In nature, especially on beaches, she captured beauty with her fabulous eye for photography. She was incredibly creative and was knitting long before celebrities made it cool.
“She loved to read, one of the many traits she inherited from Mom and Dad, and averages about 52 books a year.”
He said that what she loved most was being an aunt, and she loved being godmother to Cara and Julie.
“But especially in the last seven years she has been back in Dublin and spending so much time with her niece and three nephews which has created such a special bond, always laughing, always hugging.
“Of course there was the love of her life, Fionn, for the last 12 months. The only dog I know that had a hilarious birthday party.
“To all of your friends, colleagues and activists, don’t let Vicky’s light go out. Please continue her work and see this as a passing of the baton and please take the next step in everything she has done.
“When in doubt, ask yourself, ‘What would Vicky do?’, Slán go fóill mo dheirfiúr.”
Vicky’s brother Dermot described his sister as having a “sincere and down-to-earth intellect” and a “comet that died far too soon”.
“She was almost a sister to the wider community and I think that was her gift. Vicky was a source of intense energy and purpose,” he said.
“It will always be a source of deep pain and anguish that she left us prematurely and Vicky had two sides, though she seemed to knit them together. There was professional Vicky and personal Vicky.
“Professionally, I think she could be called someone who has accomplished so much in such a short space of time. These achievements are remarkable, each a career in itself, a lecturer, an academic, a teacher and a social advocate.
“It is heartbreaking to me that Vicky failed to see the appreciation that was being held with her, I hope she understood the appreciation, respect, adoration and love that was clearly being held with her.
“I think what Vicky has achieved is inspiring. And second, there was Vicky, the person, she always made me stop, always made me think.
“Vicky always challenged you and was always interested in what answers came back. She wanted an engagement.
“In closing, I would like to say and note that Vicky was a genuine and down to earth intellect, we are so proud of everything she has accomplished, even if it was in such a short amount of time.
“It is with a heavy heart that I will say goodbye to my sister and tell her for the last time that I love her.”
Her sister Susan thanked the public for the “thousands of messages and outpourings of love” over the past few days.
“Vicky was a champion in many ways, but most of all she was a champion of the people, she was every single person’s biggest cheerleader. To them, the law was as it should be, about people,” she said.
“Moving to Donegal in lockdown, it was a surprising move into solitude for someone so feisty, but she thrived there and had plans to make it her home for years to come.”
Her brother Craig added that Vicky “kept making really tough decisions that were consistent with her values, regardless of the consequences.”
“She had really incredibly strong values, and those were shaped by all of the experiences that she’s had and actively sought,” he said.
“She left the classrooms inspired and representing all the minorities who have been very vocal over the past few days. She was an extremely proud friend and colleague and not least the effect she had on her brothers, sisters, parents and “kids”.
“Ireland and all of us here have not only lost a brave and really brave defender of the underrepresented, we have also lost someone who just cared so much and made all of our lives better by making these difficult decisions. “
https://www.independent.ie/news/tributes-paid-to-dcu-law-professor-vicky-conway-a-comet-that-was-extinguished-far-too-early-41860237.html Tributes to DCU law professor Vicky Conway: “A comet erased way too soon”