Brendan Grace's daughter Melanie Gillespie has paid tribute to her late father on RTÉ Radio 1's Liveline, saying he had "the kindest, kindest heart".
Tributes have poured in for the much-loved entertainer since his death was announced on Thursday morning, with Melanie Gillespie telling Liveline guest presenter Katie Hannon that it was "extraordinary being his daughter".
"He had the kindest, kindest heart," she continued. "He had heart enough both for his family and a nation and we're just so proud of that. We were happy to share him."
"Offstage, although he absolutely made us laugh often, he was a different person and I loved that we got that person," Melanie Gillespie continued. "Everyone else got the entertainer, we got a more vulnerable version of that.
"It was the comfort my mam gave him that made his passing so gentle.
"He promised that he would never leave us and we believe that to be true."
Brendan Grace died at the age of 68 following a short illness.
President Michael D Higgins said Brendan Grace's sense of humour was a "profound contribution" to the "deep wellspring of Irish wit".
In a statement, President Higgins said he had learned with great sadness of the death of Brendan Grace.
"Brendan's sense of humour was drawing from, and itself a profound contribution to, the deep wellspring of Irish wit."— President of Ireland (@PresidentIRL) July 11, 2019
Statement by President Higgins on the death of Brendan Grace: https://t.co/XOOod4wL8b pic.twitter.com/blXObBtQAN
He said that as a comedian Grace's "spontaneous wit and his sense of timing, his obvious delighting in interaction with his audiences, meant that Brendan's sense of humour was drawing from, and itself a profound contribution to, the deep wellspring of Irish wit".
President Higgins said Grace's best-loved characters will endure "precisely because they are both recognisable and representative of the experiences lived and recalled by Irish people of all ages".
Speaking on RTÉ News: Six One, Grace's lifelong friend Adele King aka Twink said he would be remembered as "one of the finest stand-up comedians - a decent all-round good egg - that we've ever had".
"A lovely dad, devoted father, devoted grandfather - he's all the elements of a wonderful human being," she continued.
King said what she "would remember Bren more for is offstage".
"The fact that we've been bestie buddies," she added. "I'm a better person for having him in my life."
Also fighting back tears, fellow comedian Brendan O'Carroll said it was "very hard to think about Brendan without smiling".
"If you walked down the street beside Brendan and people walked towards him, as soon as they saw his face they'd go 'Hey!' and smile. That's what he did."
A showbusiness veteran for 50 years, Grace began his career in music before turning to comedy.
Irish band The Wolfe Tones said Grace was "a lovely person, unrivalled comedian, superb singer and guitarist" and sent their condolences to his family.
Brendan Grace RIP, a lovely person, unrivalled comedian, superb singer and guitarist, our careers intertwined over the years, our sincerest condolences to Eileen and family, RIP Brendan #BrendanGrace— The Wolfe Tones 🇮🇪 (@wolfetones) July 11, 2019
Comedian Jason Byrne said Grace was a "funny genius of a man".
Woke up in Sweden to find out Brendan Grace has passed away, what a lovely, funny genius of a man, I hate that he's gone...... May he free nippers in peace wherever he's gone, so sad Brendan, just so sad 😔😔😔😔😔😔 #brendangracerip #brendangrace— jason byrne (@thejasonbyrne) July 11, 2019
Presenter and stand-up Dara Ó Briain saluted "a comedy legend".
So sad to hear the news of the death of Brendan Grace. A genuine comedy legend in Ireland, when we were growing up he was the king of the entertainers. Sorry I never met him, but relieved I never had to follow him. RIP Brendan.— Dara Ó Briain (@daraobriain) July 11, 2019
Broadcaster Marty Whelan said that he was "a unique man and a good friend".
Journalist Roisin Ingle said Grace was "an iconic Dubliner" who was "a part of many of our childhoods".
A part of many of our childhood's, a regular on the Late Late with Gay. His comedy & personality brought him fans all over the world. An iconic Dubliner. Goodbye #BrendanGrace #Bottler https://t.co/X8FOtz0SYT— Roisin Ingle (@roisiningle) July 11, 2019
Dustin the Turkey also paid tribute to the much-loved comedian.
A fan thanked Grace for "making me and my family laugh endlessly".
Another person tweeted: "You filled the world with laughter which we will be forever grateful for."
Take a look at some tributes to the late comedy great below:
Brendan Grace was one of the great Irish stars who was a success around the world. Very sad news, he was hilarious. Especially his iconic performance in Father Ted. Rest in peace 😥💔— 🎬 Paul Berney 🎵 (@Paul_Berney) July 11, 2019
The world is a darker place today without the comedy genius that is Brendan Grace. Privileged to see him perform on numerous occasions and every time I had cramp from laughing. A true legend.. Rest Well Bottler #IrishComedyLegend #RIPBrendanGrace https://t.co/TrYbwP0okz— David Lennon ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ (@David_Lennon_) July 11, 2019
It was my great pleasure to know Brendan Grace through his daughters, and a man more full of kindness, love, compassion and fun you couldn't meet. His devotion to Eilo and his family will leave a massive hole in their lives. Sending them love. RIP— Linda Ní hEideán🧜🏻 (@LindaOkaythen) July 11, 2019
RIP Brendan Grace. You were one of a kind. Thank you for the memories https://t.co/br8cwSGKww— Dave Cremin (@magicdusa) July 11, 2019
Many of my US friends here may not know him but Brendan Grace was a very funny Irish comedian. Met him once and he was a true gentleman. RIP to one of my favorites. ☘️🇮🇪 pic.twitter.com/aIx6wbjdQd— Seamus (@IrishMoose13) July 11, 2019
Deeply saddened this morning to hear that Brendan Grace has passed away A true legend of comedy and all round nice guy He will be deeply missed across the whole of Ireland and many parts of the world where he made his mark. RIP Brendan pic.twitter.com/23wkdUeYxC— David Baker (@davidbakerdj) July 11, 2019
RIP #BrendanGrace Heartfelt condolences to his family & friends— catherine corkery (@CathCorkery) July 11, 2019
RIP Brendan Grace...What a legend sadly missed.— Marcus Aurelius.Donor card holder. UTFR🍻🇾🇪🇮🇪 (@Mark1975s) July 11, 2019
Rest easy Brendan Grace and keep laughing. I'm sure Dermot Morgan and Frank Kelly will have a glass waiting for ya! RIP pic.twitter.com/1uCzApzCJK— Padraig OBrien☀️⛈🏳️🌈 (@padnandos1) July 11, 2019
So sad to hear of the passing of Brendan Grace.— Karl Alexander Metelko ♫ (@karlmetelko) July 11, 2019
He appeared in Fr Ted where he famously ate Ted's Frosties and drilled holes in the living room wall and blasted Jungle Music at 3:00 in the morning.
"I've had my fun, and that's all that matters!"
Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam pic.twitter.com/P1CjLKJoru
Grace is survived by his wife Eileen, children and grandchildren.