Wednesday 18 September 2019

'Fair City' star Shiels 'burned bright like a comet'

Paying their respects: The coffin is carried from the Our Lady Mother of the Church in Castleknock, Dublin, after the funeral of Karl Shiels. PHOTOS: DAMIEN EAGERS and COLIN KEEGAN
Paying their respects: The coffin is carried from the Our Lady Mother of the Church in Castleknock, Dublin, after the funeral of Karl Shiels. PHOTOS: DAMIEN EAGERS and COLIN KEEGAN
‘Fair City’ co-stars including Sorcha Furlong and Tony Tormey. PHOTOS: DAMIEN EAGERS and COLIN KEEGAN
Partner Laura Honan. PHOTOS: DAMIEN EAGERS and COLIN KEEGAN
Kirsty Blake Knox

Kirsty Blake Knox

'Fair City' actor Karl Shiels "burned bright like a comet" during his 47 years, mourners at his funeral were told.

Sheils, who played Robbie Quinn in the RTÉ soap, died unexpectedly of natural causes on Sunday night.

The cast and crew of 'Fair City' had "downed tools" and taken a double decker bus to Our Lady Mother of the Church, Beechpark Lawn in Castleknock yesterday to pay their respects.

Mourners were led by Shiels's partner Laura Honan, his twin daughters Isabel and Saoirse and their mother Dearbhla, and his father Harry.

Playwright Mark O'Rowe, Moe Dunford, director of the Gate Theatre Selina Cartmell, Deirdre O'Kane, Phelim Drew, Peter Coonan, and Morah and Rex Ryan all attended the service.

Gifts brought to the altar included "his much travelled hat", his Buddha beads "which always brought him peace", family photos, and a book of poems by Nick Cave - the rock singer-songwriter who Shiels considered a god.

Speaking about her partner's unexpected death, Ms Honan said he was "all about love and light".

"He was a planner, a magician at spinning plates, a hustler, a do-er, and he had a lot left to do."

She continued: "He threw the best parties in Ireland, he told the filthiest jokes… he was always asking people what they were scribbling, and at night he'd come home and would waltz to endless music. He burned bright like a comet and these last few days the explosion of love has been deeply palpable and genuinely unforgettable."

Shiels's father Harry described his son as his "best pal".

Stepmother Irene read the poem 'What is Dying?' by Bishop Charles Henry Brent.

Irish Independent

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