'I will see him again' - Stephen Gately's mother supported by Boyzone singer's fans at 10 year anniversary mass
Boyzone star Stephen Gately’s mother has paid tribute to his fans who joined her today to mark the tenth anniversary of his death.
Margaret Gately was joined by fans who had flown in from the UK and even as far away as Geneva for a mass at St Laurence O’Toole Church on Sheriff Street in Dublin, where his funeral mass also took place a decade ago.
The singer died on October 10, 2009, at the age of 33 at his holiday home in Majorca.
After the mass which was said by Fr Eugen Timpu, mum Margaret told Independent.ie it meant “billions” to see his fans come to the mass, describing them as “so, so kind.”
She also spoke about her heartbreak on the landmark anniversary of his death. “It’s very, very sad, but I will see him again.”
She said that it didn’t feel like ten years since he had died. She is also mourning the loss of her husband Martin in March 2017.
“He is up there with his Da,” she said.
Band member Keith Duffy also posted a touching tribute on social media this morning saying: “Chance made us colleagues, love and laughter and fun made us best friends! I miss you brother!
He said that ten years ago, the “good Lord had deemed him too good for this world.”
“He needed an angel in heaven.
“Today I reminisce all the fun and laughter ups and downs. I love you Steo and I pray you continue to look over me,” he said.
Ronan Keating also spoke about their close band and said that Stephen was a pioneer in the Irish LGBT community.
He said in an Instagram post: “10 years bro and it feels like yesterday when ya texted me to say “safe flight pal see ya soon” and that was it. I have missed you every day, your laugh and your wicked sense of humour resonates always. I will continue to miss you and all you were.
“What you did for so many should never be forgotten. All those people struggling with their sexuality and afraid to come out which you paved the way for.
“You were a pioneer but that didn’t come without its challenges and you overcame it all to shine and be the human you always wanted to be.
“I love you my brother and thank you for all you taught me. Tonight I raise a glass for you Bro and listen to all the music you loved because music is the language we can still speak to each other with. ”
Cherisse Rashad from Manchester flew in this morning for the mass in St Laurence O’Toole Church. She said that she had loved Stephen and “his smile, he was just infectious. You saw him you were happy.”
She has a tattoo on her wrist, marking the year he was born 1976, and the year he died in 2009, and “I Can Dream” underneath, “which is the final Boyzone song with his vocals.”
“I just had to be here. It felt right. I came on his 40th birthday a few years ago, and I came over for his funeral,” she said.
Also among those who were at the mass today was Laura Ruttimann, from Geneva in Switzerland who flew into Dublin last Friday. She has been a huge Boyzone fan since the age of ten, and Stephen was her favourite member of the band.
She said that ten years “is a long time when you think about it, but the good thing is, he is still remembered online. All the fans remember him.”
She said that the other Boyzone band members always remember him too. “Every concert, they talk about him, and the anniversaries. The fans are still very much online talking about him, today as well.”
Laura said that she usually comes every year for his birthday which was on St Patrick’s Day, and visits his mother.
She said she still listens to the music. “They have been a huge part of my life, and I am a big pop fan. The music still resonates with me now,” the 35-year-old said.
Some of his fans had crowdfunded online for the flowers inside the church for the mass.
A postmortem has found that the singer died of natural causes. He had an undiagnosed heart condition.