Former south Armagh SDLP councillor Geraldine Donnelly has passed away while on holiday in Spain.
Ms Donnelly retired from council in 2016.
Councillor Pete Byrne, who replaced her on Newry, Mourne and Down Council, led the tributes to a “gentle soul”.
“Words have failed me all day and I still don’t fully believe that Geraldine is no longer with us,” councillor Byrne said.
“Geraldine was a lady in every sense of the word and she will be sorely missed by all who knew her.
“Her gentle soul and kind nature was her greatest strength as a public representative.”
He added: “For 11 years she quietly represented the people of south Armagh with dignity and respect.
“She was a beacon of integrity and never wavered from her principles. She was passionately SDLP and I was honoured to follow in her footsteps and continue her work.
“My thoughts are with Sean and her family at this difficult time. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a hanam.
“‘Nothing is so strong as gentleness, nothing so gentle as real strength'”.
Ms Donnelly was a serving Board Member of Newry and Mourne Enterprise Agency and held the role of Deputy Mayor with the former Newry and Mourne Council in 2011/2012.