OVER 800 mourners and nearly 40 priests turned out to pay their final respects to the former Chief Scout of Scouting Ireland and Past President of The Irish Association of Funeral Directors yesterday (Monday, February 22).
Dundalk is mourning the loss of Peter Dixon, a lifelong scout and undertaker who has been dubbed by many as a “true gentleman”. The 81-year-old from St Nicholas Avenue and Bridge Street, Dundalk died peacefully at home on Friday last.
Tributes have been pouring in for Peter who co-founded Dixon’s Funeral Home with Niall Kehoe in 1978, and spent 50 years of his life working at a national level with the scouting organisation.
“People travelled from all over the country to attend the funeral. St Nicholas’ Church can hold 800 people and it was packed to capacity and there were more people outside,” said Niall Kehoe of Dixon’s.
“There were 19 priests on the altar. It was all there was room for. There were 20 more priests amongst the congregation. Peter had a fitting send off. He deserved all that he received because he dedicated his life to the community.”
Cora Duffy said: “Dundalk has lost one of its last true gentlemen, a man who possessed a wonderful skill in dealing with bereaved in a calming, supporting and sympathetic manner.”
Una Casey from Kilcurry said: “Our thoughts are with the Dixon family on the death of Peter. He was a pure gentleman and good friend of my late husband, Denis, and family.”
Jerome Sheerin from Castletown Road said: “ Peter was a man of great faith, salt of the the earth, a true friend to everyone.”
Peter and Deirdre Curtis said: “We are very sorry to hear of Peter’s death. He was a true gentleman and will be sadly missed”, while Michael McGahon said: “Peter was a gentleman, a great friend to my late father, PV McGahon, and a wonderful example to the young men and women of the Scouts.”
Peter was a former member on the Board of Management at Realt na Mara NS and Castletown Girls’ School. He was also a past member of the Pupil’s Union of De La Salle Secondary School.
Peter was the final Chief Scout of Scouting Ireland CSI before Scouting Ireland was formed. Some of the projects Peter worked on included the ‘Gifts of Peace Project’ and the ‘Castlesaunderson Project’.
As a mark of respect all Scouting Ireland offices closed at noon yesterday, and the World Scout Flag at the local Scout Hall flew at half mast. Peter reposed at Dixon’s Funeral Home from 4pm on Saturday afternoon for friends and family to call.
Evening prayers were held at 6pm on Sunday evening in Dixon’s Funeral Home. The removal took place on Monday at 12.30pm to St Nicholas’ Church. The funeral cortege left the funeral home at 12.30pm.
The cortege walked via Castletown Road, paused at Scout Hall, Philip Street, Patrick Street, and continued on to Bridge Street, before arriving at the church for 1pm mass. The burial took place afterwards in St Patrick’s Cemetery.
Peter is pre-deceased by his mother Elizabeth, father John, brothers Tommy and Paddy, sisters Alice (Hickey) and Maura (English). He is survived by his sister Lilly (Crawley) and husband Michael, brother Willie and wife Briege, nieces, nephews, the Kehoe family and a large circle of family and friends.