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Statement from North Antrim MP Ian Paisley

"I wish to express to the family of Norman Houston my deepest and sincere condolences on the sudden death of Norman. To his son Connor and daughter Chloe in particular I express my sincere condolences.

I have known Norman more than 20 years. In fact as Junior Minister I appointed him to his role as NI representative in Washington DC. This was a role that was made for him. He served NI with distinction for 15 years in that position. In reality he had access to the Whitehouse and the Hill that many national representative offices were jealous of.

He was our man in America and he did more to promote NI there than anyone else. His like will not be seen again.

Like many I am shocked by the sudden nature of his passing and I can only hope that his family find comfort in the very many happy memories they have."