Family overwhelmed by huge support as 'precious gift' Emmy (5) laid to rest
A five-year-old girl who died in a lake tragedy in Germany was hailed as a "precious gift" to her family.
The funeral of Emmy Sophia Eckert took place in Ballincollig, Co Cork, as her parents, Andreas and Darlene Eckert, said they were totally overwhelmed by the support shown to them.
Ballincollig Baptist Bible Centre staged the little girl's funeral service as hundreds gathered to show their support for the devastated family.
Cork was left shocked as two local children died in overseas drowning tragedies in the space of a week.
Four days after Emmy's tragic accident, little Avery James Green (3) from Mallow died after being found unresponsive in a swimming pool in the Costa Blanca resort of Cabo Roig in Spain.
Emmy was due to return to school at Scoil Mhuire in Ballincollig in just over a week.
Mourners yesterday included families whose children attend Scoil Mhuire, as well as workmates of her parents at VMWare in Cork.
Baptist Bible Centre Pastor Craig Ledbetter said the local community had showed "tremendous love, kindness and compassion" to the family.
"They need it at this difficult time," he said.
The pastor said Emmy loved her family, her friends and her classmates.
"She was full of fun and she loved life," he said. "But Emmy has not missed life. She has simply skipped this world. God will wipe away all tears.
"This funeral is not a 'goodbye forever' funeral. Because of the Lord Jesus, we are not saying goodbye to Emmy but goodnight. We believe we will see Emmy again."