They buried Peter Sutherland as the watery Janu- ary sunlight lit up the valley of the Loughlinstown riv- er. It was a suitable homecoming for an Irish giant who strode the global stage but was defined by his love of family, friends, faith, fatherland and also a little football. The cemetery in Ballycorus lies next to the prac- tice grounds of the club he captained, Lansdowne FC. The yellow-black-and-red colours were much in evidence, bearing witness to an old player coming home. While the great and good flew in from all over the world for a beautiful funeral Mass in Donnybrook Church, for the most part, it was Peter's own people who were there as his beloved family buried him after a remarkably packed 71 years on earth. The scale of Peter’s achievements was extraordi- nary with a rare combination of private sector success and public service on a global scale that made him one of the great Irishmen of the past century. He had a resume which was measured not in pages but in pounds and ounces: European Person of the Year (1988), Gold Medal from the European Parlia- ment, Knighthoods from Belgium, Brazil and Britain - and that is just the Bs. He was honoured by universi- ties around the world: St Louis, Wharton, UCD, Trin- ity, London Business School, Oxford, Nottingham, Exeter. I could go on but you get the idea. He made a huge contribution to his own country before his 40th birthday, to the European Union and then to the world as the first Director General of the World Trade Organisation – Mickey Kantor, the US Trade Secretary said Peter was the man who made it happen. Jack Ma, the brilliant Chinese entrepreneur and founder of Ali Baba said that Peter was the Father of Globalisation. He was a proud alumnus of Gonzaga College, a liberal Jesuit day school which prided itself on produc- ing great leaders (the Dublin joke is that the unofficial motto was “We are Tops for Humility”). The gorgeous library there bears his name after his typical generos- ity. It was fitting that the boys of the school choir sung beautifully at his Requiem. His rugby career started at Gonzaga and he delighted in attending a dinner of his old team mates where they celebrated the 50th anni- versary of the first school team to win a match. Then, it was UCD for law – the recently-com- pleted Sutherland School of Law marks his contribu- tion – which led to a stellar career at the Irish Bar which he left to become the youngest-ever Attorney General of Ireland followed by the European Commis- sion. At the Commission, he was credited with setting the course for the liberalisation of air travel which al- lowed hundreds of millions of Europeans to take to the sky and also the Erasmus programme which allowed millions of European university students to take study periods in other states. He had a brief flirtation with business in Ireland which he found a little dull before going to Geneva to start the World Trade Organisa- tion. By the time he left in 1995, he had prepared a framework which allowed billions in the developing world to raise themselves from charity. He was 49 when he started his second business career, this time in London. It was just grand. He was a partner in and Chairman of Goldman Sachs Interna- tional during a period when it moved from Challenger to most successful investment bank in Europe. That pre-IPO partnership provided the fuel that fired his remarkable philanthropy. There were a litany of other business successes, especially as Chairman of BP when it joined with Amoco in the biggest industrial merger in history. But Peter was not much interested in money of business. He was a proud Irishman, a man who was bitterly disappointed not to play rugby for Ireland – he captained Lansdowne and UCD, was strong and very combative. Dublin’s two major universities bear witness to his philanthropy. His gargantuan CV received a new chapter as recently as 2015 when he was appointed as Professor in Practice at the London School of Economics where he formerly chaired the Governing Body. When Peter and I talked, as we did many times a week, his consistent interest was in Ireland. He served Chairman of the Trustees of the Ireland Fund of Great Britain and was the biggest benefactor in our history and took an active part in visiting our beneficiary char- ities, especially those helping the Forgotten Irish, the men and women who left Ireland to rebuild Britain in the 1950s and, frankly, struggled in their later years. It was typical of Peter that he was hands-on. His life has been marked by the level of direct personal engagement that one might expect of a tighthead prop and the moral compass directed by the faith which guided him all his days. Some years ago, as head of the biggest energy company in Europe and the biggest investment bank in Europe and of the LSE, Peter slipped away and spent ten days working with the poorest of the poor, the chil- dren of Calcutta. Typically, he claimed it was a last ef- fort to save his soul. More recently in the year before his final illness, I called Peter during the week of the World Economic Forum in Davos where he had been a stalwart for many years. In 2016, his 70th year, he was not among the rich and powerful in Switzerland but on a freezing beach caring for the poor, the disposed, floating in on the tide. He had stood down from Goldman Sachs in 2015 to devote himself to his work as the United National Special Representative on Migration of the Secretary General. Ban Ki-moon told the world that Peter was doing Humanity’s Work. It was not a popular cause but Peter never took a backward step. He was not prey to false modesty. He spoke to a select gathering in Dublin under Chatham House rules which meant that what was said could not be reported. He was greeting with rapturous applause. As he looked on the heaving mass, standing as one to cheer him he said: “CHATHAM HOUSE RULES SUSPENDED”! His charity was built on a Christian faith which sustained him and drove his commitment to the weak. He beat cancer in 2009 and typically attributed his re- covery to the prayers of the religious orders as well as his doctors. His final illness came when he collapsed as he walked to Mass in London. Peter was blessed in his friends but also in his family. In his wallet for almost 50 years was a photo of Maruja who came from Santander to Dublin to learn Spanish and never escaped. Peter Sutherland 1946-2018 B Y R O R Y G O D S O N Rory Godson is a Trustee of The Ireland Funds Great Britain. connect 2018 • 54