THE sudden death of Rev. Robert Ormerod, minister of Cloughmills Free Presbyterian Church, has caused wisespread regret not only amongst his congregation but to a wide circle of friends.
The Rev. Ormerod suffered a fatal heart attack while travelling with his three sisters on the M6 in Warwickshire last week. They had been due to meet with their brother in Coventry.
News of Rev. Ormerod’s passing quickly spread leaving many in total shock. His son, Timothy, confirmed that his father had suffered a heart attack and died at the wheel of the car.
“Whatever pain and suffering he had there is none now because we know he is in heaven with Jesus,” Timothy said.
Local MLA, Mervyn Storey, described Rev. Ormerod as a faithful minister of the gospel and said his thoughts and prayers were with his wife and family.
The Rev. Ormerod was said by the former Moderator of the Free Presbyterian Church, Dr. Ian Paisley, to have been a hard worker, diligent and very pleasant.
A native of Belfast, Rev. Ormerod was employed in the circulation department of the Belfast Telegraph, working with the then Ballymena Observer before entering the ministry.
He always spoke of his desire to become involved with the Church and his devotion and love of his job endeared him to many.
He always had time for his congregation as well as others with whom he came in contact and while never one to foist his views on those not of his flock, his sincerity and genuine approach shone through.
Ordained in February 1985, Rev. Ormerod spent a number of years living in Killyrammer with his wife, Julie, and his children and was delighted when he helped oversee the building of the new church in Cloughmills.
The sod cutting took place in February 1993 and the congregation moved there in December 1995. Rev. Ormerod and his family then occupied their new manse in February 2005.
Recently he celebrated 30 years in Cloughmills during which time he was appointed the church’s Convenor of Government and Morals.
Rev. Ormerod is survived by his wife, Julie, a highly respected nurse and by his children, Naomi, Jonathan, Timothy, Hannah and Danielle.
Sympathy from the community is extended to the family and family circle.