Andrew Walsh, an East Hampton resident and dedicated outdoorsman, died of a heart attack on Sept. 13 while bicycling through Northwest Woods. He was 45 years old.
Mr. Walsh was born to Charlie and Maureen Walsh in Birmingham, England, in 1966, and grew up in Ballina, County Mayo, Ireland. He attended St. Muredach’s College in Ballina, and later, Sligo Regional Technical College, where he studied engineering and tool-making.
He worked for a time for his father’s engineering company, Injection Molds and Die Ltd., before moving to the United States in 1992 to establish his own garden design and landscape company, Summer Colors. “He had a gentle stewardship of the land and a respect for the nature of the landscape,” said Sinead FitzGibbon, a friend.
In addition to running his own business, Mr. Walsh founded Spokespeople, a cycling advocacy group, and served as a liaison to the East Hampton Town Police Department with regard to trail management. He worked devotedly with the East Hampton Trails Preservation Society, clearing and maintaining trails and minimizing damage from all-terrain vehicles. He was the founder and president of Team Hops, a recreational and competitive mountain biking club.
In America, Mr. Walsh competed in bike racing as well as trail running throughout Utah, Colorado, and New England, where he also ice-climbed. In Ireland, he headed the Moy Canoeing Club, taking part in competitive slalom and white-water canoeing. And, he did mountaineering and mountain rescue with the Nephin Beg Mountaineering Club.
“There are few people in this world that can pull off sincere kindness,” Kevin Otto, a close friend, wrote of Mr. Walsh. “It takes something other than just ‘being nice to others.’ They can pull this off so gracefully that even a simple ‘hello, goodbye’ in reflection can be remembered as a momentous occasion.”
Mr. Walsh is survived by five siblings, Ann Durkin, Larry Walsh, Simon Walsh, John Walsh, and Orla Walsh, all of whom live in Ballina. Mr. Walsh is also survived by his life partner, Rikki Furman.
Services were held on Sept. 21 in Ireland. There will be a commemorative duathlon in Northwest Woods next August to celebrate Mr. Walsh’s life.
The family has suggested memorial donations for the trails preservation society, P.O. Box 2144, Amagansett 11930, or Spokespeople, P.O. Box 2599, Sag Harbor 11963, or the Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy Association, P.O. Box 306, Hibernia, N.J. 07842.