Family vow to fulfil dreams of slain father Jason Corbett at emotional funeral Mass
The sister of Jason Corbett, who was killed in America earlier this month, has vowed to fulfil his dreams for his children.
Tracey Lynch, who is now the guardian of Mr Corbett's two young children Jack (10) and Sarah (8), wrote, along with her husband David, an emotional eulogy for his funeral Mass, describing her brother as her hero.
She told how he was a "lost soul" after the death of his first wife Mags, adding that if he could not be with his children, then he would want to be with her.
Several hundred mourners who gathered at Our Lady Queen of Peace Church in Janesboro, Limerick for the funeral Mass applauded the eulogy read by David Lynch.
"I know my brother left lots of things undone and others that he never had the chance to start, but I promise that I will continue what he started and hopefully fulfil his dreams for him.
"This is just my small way of saying thank you for everything he did for me," wrote Tracey.
Mourners heard how Jason had been due to bring his children home on the very day of his burial and how the family must now bravely face life without him, holding on to their faith that the truth will be told and that there is justice in this world.
The eulogy continued: "I think I speak for everybody when I say our lives have been better for having him as part of ours.
"He enriched our lives and made a box full of memories for each of us that are ours to keep or share and nobody can take that away."
The congregation heard that Jason had been at his happiest when he met and married Mags and they had their two beautiful children together.
"For a time, he was as happy as anyone could be. After Mags died, he was a lost soul. Even though he lived his life with dignity, the light and spark were never fully replaced.
"If Jason couldn't be here, I know in my heart he wanted to be with Mags.
"Right up until they went to America, he would spend every single day at her grave. We would often pass and return an hour later and he was still there," wrote Tracey, telling how Jason would take his lunch up to the grave and read her the papers.
Her last talk with her brother had been about their funerals.
"My brother didn't like to see people cry, especially his family," she wrote, revealing how Jason had wanted a carnival or "anything that would make people laugh".
The final words of the service were left to Jason himself.
"I wanted a perfect ending but I've learned the hard way some poems don't rhyme and some stories don't have a clear beginning, middle and end," it read, ending with: "Saying goodbye is so hard, until we meet again."
The heartbroken family comforted Jack and Sarah, who brought gifts to the altar in memory of their father. The children carried a Liverpool jersey and an Irish jersey, along with a golf set and Munster jersey, signifying their father's love of sports.
Beginning the Mass, local priest Fr Pat O'Sullivan spoke directly to the children, telling them: "Jack and Sarah, you're very important to us all today, you are the most important people.
"What really matters today is that Jason is Jack and Sarah's dad. Jack and Sarah, you know that he loved you very much and did all he could to make you happy. He worked hard and you had fun together."
Fr O'Sullivan praised the support for the family, describing the candlelit gathering as bringing "such hope and peace to the family in a very dark time".
Mr Corbett was found with fatal head injuries at his North Carolina home on August 2. His second wife, Molly Martens, and her father, Thomas Marten, were named by police as persons of interest but no formal arrests have yet been made.