Dr Ryan, who was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Laws by the University in 1987, was one of Ireland's foremost entrepreneurs as founder of Guinness Peat Aviation and Ryan Air.
The Martin Ryan Institute, which is the home of marine science research at NUI Galway, was established by the University in 1992 and made possible by the support of Dr Tony Ryan who made a generous gift to the University in honour of his father, Martin Ryan (1902-1955). Dr Ryan's foresight has had far-reaching effects, particularly in establishing the MRI as one of the foremost marine research institutions in the world.
The NUI Galway President said: "Tony Ryan s achievements as an astute businessman and innovative entrepreneur are world-renowned. He will also be remembered as an insightful philanthropist and an enlightened man of the arts, with a strong sense of pride in his Irishness. We in NUI Galway, who benefitted from his vision and his support of the Martin Ryan Marine Science Institute, are deeply indebted to him. On the sad occasion of his passing, I extend my deepest sympathies to his family and close friends on behalf of NUI Galway.