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Monday 22 September 2014

Grafton Street comes to a standstill as tribute to flower seller Theresa (85)

Clodagh Sheehy

Published 21/06/2014 | 09:42

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The Funeral of  Grafton Street flower seller Theresa Kelly in White Friar Street Church Dublin. Pic. Bryan Meade 20/6/2014
The Funeral of Grafton Street flower seller Theresa Kelly in White Friar Street Church Dublin. Pic. Bryan Meade 20/6/2014
The Funeral of  Grafton Street flower seller Theresa Kelly in White Friar Street Church Dublin pictured grand daughter Sabrina Behan and daughter Margret Kelly. Pic. Bryan Meade 20/6/2014
The Funeral of Grafton Street flower seller Theresa Kelly in White Friar Street Church Dublin pictured grand daughter Sabrina Behan and daughter Margret Kelly. Pic. Bryan Meade 20/6/2014
The Funeral of  Grafton Street flower seller Theresa Kelly in White Friar Street Church Dublin. Pic. Bryan Meade 20/6/2014
The Funeral of Grafton Street flower seller Theresa Kelly in White Friar Street Church Dublin. Pic. Bryan Meade 20/6/2014

Theresa Kelly brought Grafton Street to a standstill yesterday.

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A colourful funeral was a fitting tribute to the 85-year-old who sold flowers on the street for more than six decades.

Her white coffin, carried in a white and glass hearse and drawn by two plumed white horses, was given special permission to come down Grafton Street.

Lunch-time shoppers stood in silence as the hearse paused at the junction with Harry Street and a lone piper played a final lament.

There were so many wreaths for the former flower seller that a second, heavily laden, horse-drawn show-cart had to pull them behind the hearse.

A huge spray of red roses covered the coffin and the family wreaths included one in the shape of her favourite tipple - a Guinness bottle - and others in the shape of a pack of cigarettes, a heart, a book, a chair and even a butterfly.

“She loved flowers of every kind and made beautiful wreaths and arrangements for christenings weddings and funerals,” said her daughter Barbara, who now runs the stall with Theresa’s granddaughter Sabrina.

Theresa spent her entire life in Mercer House, just a stone’s throw from Whitefriar Street Church, where hundreds of family and friends gathered for her Requiem Mass.

In her long life, Theresa reared nine children, had 24 grandchildren and 23 great grandchildren.

Her mother, also called Theresa, opened the flower stall on Grafton Street and the business is now being run by the fourth generation.

Yesterday, traffic in the city centre came to a halt as the funeral cortege of 15 mourning cars travelled from the church to Grafton Street before the final journey to Mount Jerome cemetery, where Theresa was laid to rest.

csheehy@herald.ie

Irish Independent

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