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Hugh O’Donnell

 It is with great sadness that we report the passing of one our beloved AIVS family members, Hugh O’Donnell, husband of Sophie Renton, and friend to us all. Hugh left us on 1 August 2020, and made an impact on all members of AIVS with his sense of humour, quiet wit, and captivating story-telling. Our condolences go out to Sophie and her entire family during this difficult time. Hugh will remain with us always. 

Sophie’s contact information is: sophie.renton@nhs.net 

Here also is a tribute posted on the internet describing “Lord Hugh”:

In 2010 when I was 16 and had just finished my GCSEs, I began working for Lance McCormack during my summer. Working alongside me was a chap who had been a dear friend of the family for some time by now and had too just taken up a role with Dad at Romance of Rust. As an arrogant little gobshite, and this dear man an astute Old Wet, it must be said at first we regularly wound one another up at work. 

Over the course of that summer though, we began to bond over a mutual adoration for 30s Hot Rods, 60s Corvettes and 70s Mercedes and a shared dark sense of humour. I grew so fond of his tales of travel. He’d seen the world and I was in awe. His encyclopaedic knowledge on subjects far and wide was unlike anyone else I knew. He taught me so much. The highlight of my week by August was a naughty pint or two of London Pride at the Red Lion in Ealing (sorry then landlord, Jonathan Lee!) with himself and Dad on a Friday evening after work. It was an opportunity to partake in conversation discussing things all new to me. He was a magnificent storyteller and loved to recount tales of his time in the film game, especially working on Chariots of Fire, something he was, rightly, very proud of. 

Over time, we christened this wonderful man “Lord Hugh”, a term he blushed at but I think he secretly loved. Hugh O’Donnell has remained a huge part of our lives ever since. Always on hand to help out, forever taking such great pride and care in the management of his family affairs, forever immensely proud of his wonderful wife, Sophie Renton, and two sons, Vivian O’Donnell and William. Lord Hugh became a member of our disjointed family, part of the firm. It would always brighten the day if he popped in. We have all continued to look forward to pints and the company of Lord Hugh ever since. 

This man’s passing leaves an inconsolable void in the lives of so many. One of life’s greats gone too soon. I will miss you forever matey. Thank you for all of the memories and everything you taught me. 

RIP Hugh O’Donnell 

 Mark Adelman MD 

Chairman, AIVS 

The pictures above were taken during a great trip we took together in January of this year to Champoluc. As usual when spending anytime with Hugh we were entertained and informed with his encyclopaedic knowledge of so many things; vintage cars, the film industry, the theatre, art, architecture and more. He was a modern Renaissance man as well as one of the nicest people you could ever meet. We will all miss him terribly but especially send our love and condolences to Sophie, Vivian and William.