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Brian O’Donovan Obituary News – Death ; Brian O’Donovan, An Ambassador For Celtic Music and Irish Culture, Has Passed Away

Brian O’Donovan, the longtime host of GBH’s radio show A Celtic Sojourn and the creative force and host of “A Christmas Celtic Sojourn,” which has been a holiday tradition for New Englanders for over 20 years, died on Friday at his home after a long battle with cancer. He was 66.

“His passion for music and his sheer joy in sharing it was abundantly clear to GBH listeners, whether of his weekly show or of his spirited live events,” Susan Goldberg, GBH’s president and chief executive officer, said in a statement. “Brian never encountered a stranger during his more than 35 years working for our company. His friendliness toward his coworkers and his steadfast dedication to GBH’s goal will be sorely missed.

During his productions of “A Christmas Celtic Sojourn” — an annual mix of live music, dancing and storytelling — O’Donovan transported the audience to the Christmases of his childhood in Ireland. He recounted the rituals that were sacred to his family, even if they applied to “fairly mundane things,” such as who got to light the Christmas candle on Christmas Eve, or who got the first cup of “Van Houten’s” hot cocoa.

“Christmas was just full of always, an important time for the always things in life, the things that you expect to happen every year,” he said.

Brian O’Donovan was an “always” in his own right. You always expected to hear him on the radio on Saturday afternoons. You always expected him to take to the stage around the holidays.

Words fall short of expressing our grief for your loss, as we mourn with family and friends for this great loss. We are truly sorry to hear of the loss of this promising being. Please accept our condolences and may our prayers help comfort you. Please receive our heartfelt condolences.

Feel free to drop condolences messages and prayers for the family and friends of the deceased as it will go a very long way at this difficult time of theirs.