Marian Finucane Dies At 69


From top: Marian Finucane on air In 1996; with the 2008 ‘Outstanding Achievement’ PPI radio Award; with husband John Clarke during a DIT Honorary Degree ceremony at The Royal Hospital, Kilmainham, Dublin in 2002; at Bewley’s Cafe, Grafton Street, Dublin 2, during Ireland’s Biggest Coffee Morning in aid of hospice care in 2005; at the same event in 1999; attending the removal of Nuala O’Faolain at the Church of the Visitation, Fairview, Dublin in 2008; RTÉ Radio One publicity photo

This evening.

RTÉ has announced the sudden death of broadcaster Marian Finucane at the age of 69.

RTÉ reports:

RTÉ Director General Dee Forbes said: “We learned today of the sudden passing of Marian Finucane with profound shock and sadness.

“Marian was a broadcaster of immense capability; a household name, she was first and foremost a tenacious journalist with a zeal for breaking new ground.

“From Women Today to Liveline to her weekday radio show on Radio 1 and, latterly, her enormously popular Saturday and Sunday radio programme, she tackled the big social issues of the day with command and insight.

“Multi-skilled, she forged a distinguished career on television, as well as undertaking significant charity work in Africa. Ireland has lost a unique voice. RTÉ has lost a beloved colleague. My sincere and heartfelt sympathies to her husband John and son Jack.”


Death announced of RTÉ broadcaster Marian Finucane (RTÉ)

RTÉ broadcaster Marian Finucane dies aged 69 (The Irish Times)

Pics; Rollingnews

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28 thoughts on “Marian Finucane Dies At 69

  1. Slightly Bemused

    Strangely this hit me harder than I thought it would. I had the pleasure of meeting her a few times, and she was always a lady, and took the time to say hello to everyone in a group. I will miss her voice on the airwaves.

    Rest well, dear lady, and deepest condolences to your family.

    1. Lilly

      Lucky you, Slightly. I’d love to have met her. I’d love to have worked on her programme. Great that she died with her boots on. RIP Marian, a huge loss.

  2. V

    No matter what I have had to say about the lady in recent years
    I am as shocked as anyone
    And really sorry she didn’t get to enjoy a few years to herself in retirement
    She was an Broadcasting Icon
    Regardless and without doubt

    Sincere condolences to her family and friends and colleagues
    Marian has left a huge void in their lives
    And no words from me can blusher brush over that

    RIP Marian girl

    Vanessa E Foran

  3. Rosette of Sirius

    A real loss to our airwaves. Unlike the passing of Gay Byrne where his race was run and he went out on his terms, she had so much more to give, I believe.

    My Sunday morning of soft boiled eggs and soldiers and a pot of tea will never be the same again.

    The shock of this news reminds me of the same shock I had when Gerry Ryan passed.

    Anyways. RIP.

  4. Ringsend Incinerator


    Her radio programme really voiced an Ireland devoid of empathy; one I want no part of.

    But today is not the today.

    Condolences to friends and family.

  5. Rosette of Sirius

    Really, really glad to see the drossand the dregs cleared out of this thread. Shame on the lot of yis….. feel free to clear this out too. But felt it needed to be said….

  6. Steph Pinker

    This is very sad news; I wasn’t really a fan of her Saturday show but I listened to her Sunday show sometimes and she didn’t need a script because she was a veteran of interviewing, going with the flow and she always knew her subject matter, yet, she had the professional ability of being able to guide an interviewee back on track with subtlety, and, more importantly, she wasn’t afraid to ask the hard questions in the context of the interview and information proffered.

    Well, that’s the end of my Sunday morning MF: I can’t abide Brendan O’ Connor because he hasn’t a clue about listening or interviewing, all he does is interrupt and regurgitate what the researchers have provided him with in the guise of knowledge – he’s a bit like Pat Kenny in that regard. MF could think, extrapolate information and engage with sensitivity and intelligence – even though she did sail close to the wind on occasion.

    Also, she had a really sarcastic laugh which was rarely displayed, but she had a wicked sense of humour, in a good way.

    Ar dheis Dé go raibh a hanam.

    1. Lilly

      Are you confusing the Saturday show and the Sunday one? Sunday was the panel running through the newspapers. Saturday was when Marian got to shine. So many great interviews… I wonder what she thought of Jordan Peterson.

      1. Steph Pinker

        No, I’m not confusing anything, Lilly. Her Saturday show mostly covered human interest topics and invariably included interviewing some notable* individuals toting a biography which were scripted interviews; not to mention the cooking/ architecture/ holiday items with the usual RTÉ staff. On her Sunday show she was able to use her wit and intelligence to ‘shine’ and think on her feet, particularly with politicians because it was [relatively] unscripted – even over the noise of the rustling newspapers.

        Anyway, let’s beg to differ.


        1. Lilly

          I’m not arguing with you, just curious. I preferred the Saturday show because it was pure Marian, no competing voices apart from her interviewees. Yes, she sometimes had authors peddling a book – which could also be compelling, for instance Marian Keyes who revealed more than she intended to and lashed out at Marian afterwards on social media – but she also had the Sean Fitzpatricks.

          I emailed the programme in November the day Moya Doherty was on, with a comment on public service broadcasting and public service pay grades. I feel bad that I didn’t take the time to add that I felt Marian herself, with her breadth of knowledge and experience, was worth every penny. I suppose I took it for granted that she’d go on forever.

  7. Shitferbrains

    Pleasantly suprised that the comments aren’t wall to wall begrudgery and all round nastiness.

    1. Janet, I ate my avatar

      things are getting more pleasant around here again, let’s keep that an upward curve for 2020, have I jinxed it now, hope not

  8. RuilleBuille

    A ‘consummate professional’? She couldn’t even read the newspaper headlines without a stumble and a mumble.


    1. Brother Barnabas

      so have i, hoop (as well as women of many other nationalities) (albeit in a different way)

      kindly remember it when i too shuffle off this mortal coil

          1. Otis Blue

            I’d like to think we’ve all bases covered.

            Respectful reverence or raw, untrammeled emotion? Either way, it’ll be a fitting denouement to a stellar career.

  9. Holden MaGroin

    I often wonder what she made of Oliver Callan’s take on her which painted her as an alcoholic chain smoker.

Comments are closed.

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