'True Mirror man' Joe Gorrod dies aged 74 after 40 years at the paper

A veteran Daily Mirror reporter who died on Sunday has been described as “a legend of the game”.

Joe Gorrod worked on the paper for more than 40 years before his retirement in 2009, spending the vast majority of his career in its Northern Ireland office.

He passed away on Sunday following  an illness.

Gorrod joined the Mirror in 1968 and moved to Northern Ireland from County Durham a year later.

His time working out of the Mirror’s Belfast office saw him cover the worst period of the Troubles and, later, the efforts to bring peace to the country.

Having already retired once, Gorrod was convinced to return to his job to accompany the sisters of IRA murder victim Robert McCartney on their trip to Washington, where then-President George Bush backed the family’s campaign for justice.

John Kierans, editor-in-chief for Mirror Group Newspapers in Ireland said: “Joe Gorrod was the heart of the Mirror. He taught us all so much over the years and he personally taught me as much as he could about the business.

“He was a legend in the game, a true Mirror man who was passionate about reporting the news in full colour and passionate about the Mirror and what the paper stood for then and today.

“He championed the ordinary person, whether they were our readers or our young reporters, and he went out of his way to help anyone who needed it.

“In the North he covered the Troubles and the birth of the civil rights movement right through to the peace process.

“He was extremely brave. He was threatened many times and caught up in many gunfights on the streets trying to bring the news to our readers.

“Joe carried the Mirror through the Troubles with his own style and flair.

“He made the news make sense, he ensured the public were presented with the truth about what was happening and he spoke plainly to everyone.

“He was an excellent reporter and a fantastic writer who could make the readers laugh and cry. We have missed him since he retired four years ago. We will never forget Joe – no one who met him ever could.”

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