Anglican priest Jack Heaslip, who served as chaplain for the band U2 and lead singer Bono for years, died peacefully in his home in Dublin, Ireland over the weekend of February 21. The popular preacher had been battling motor neurone disease, but continued to minister to the band and their huge, 500-member crew while they traveled all over the world.
Heaslip’s relationship with the band members began in the ’70s while he was a guidance counselor at Mount Temple Comprehensive, where the musicians were educated. The band referred to Heaslip as their “North Star.” According to the band’s blog, Heaslip liked to arrive at the venues early to take a prayer walk through the seats and spaces that would be filled later that night with U2’s fans.
The Patheos blog called Heaslip “the coolest man alive,” and Reverend Val Rogers, rector at the Aughavale group of parishes where Heaslip also ministered, paid tribute to him for “his intelligence, courage and love.”
Heaslip, who was in his 70s, is survived by his wife Patricia and family.