Family will lay Dean to rest in new plot big enough for Amy
TRAGIC stab victim Dean Fitzpatrick will finally be laid to rest tomorrow in a fresh plot, large enough to also accommodate his missing sister Amy, should she ever be found.
The court row over where to bury the 23-year-old – which delayed his funeral last Friday – has been resolved and the estranged parents of the dead man are both expected to attend and participate in the service.
Dean's stepfather, Dave Mahon, has admitted stabbing him with a 12-inch knife on Sunday, May 26, outside Mr Mahon's apartment, but claims he acted in self-defence.
The body of the father of one was initially released to his mother, Audrey Fitzpatrick, partner of Mr Mahon.
But Dean's partner, Sarah O'Rourke, and his father, Christopher Fitzpatrick, went to the High Court on Friday to ensure their wishes for his burial were heeded.
Following the hearing before Mr Justice Nicholas Kearns, Dean's body was released to Ms O'Rourke after his mother agreed that he could be buried in a new plot, rather than with his grandmother.
Ms O'Rourke also gave an undertaking that differences would be set aside for the funeral and that it would be conducted respectfully.
Dean's aunt, Christine Kenny, said the family were now hoping they could give the young man the peaceful funeral he deserved, before laying him to rest in Fingal Cemetery.
"It's been a very hard time for everybody," she said, adding that the family were liaising with Audrey to see if she wanted "anybody to do anything in the church".
"We have done it in a dignified way. Nobody is excluded."
After the court battle was resolved, a new memorial notice was issued, which stated that the funeral would take place at the Church of the Holy Trinity, Donaghmede, rather than the church chosen by Audrey.
Dean's partner Sarah and son Leon are the chief mourners, followed by his father and mother. His father was not mentioned at all in the first notice.
And instead of Dean being described as from Artane, he is now described as hailing from Lusk and formerly of Clare Hall.
The second notice also mentions that Dean was sadly missed by his sister Amy, who has not been seen since she disappeared in Spain five years ago, aged 15.
Ms Kenny said she and other members of the family continued to hope and pray that Amy was alive, while Audrey Fitzpatrick has stated publicly she believes her daughter is dead.
A removal service for Dean will take place this evening at 5.30pm, with his funeral tomorrow after 10am Mass, followed by burial in Fingal Cemetery.
Meanwhile, Dean's father has revealed how Dean was just beginning to open up about his missing sister Amy in the weeks before he died.
It has also emerged that Dean received two phone calls from Mr Mahon in the hours before his death, asking him to go to Mr Mahon's apartment.
Mr Fitzpatrick said he was with his son when he got the calls. "He was with me earlier on that day. He got two calls," he recalled.
Dean borrowed a bike and cycled to the Clare Hall apartment block, arriving just before 11pm. He was discovered dying of a single stab wound at the entrance at 11.20pm.
Dean's aunt told how she feared the worst when surgeons called them into a family room.
"I said to Christopher, 'you would want to prepare yourself, because you are only called in there when something has happened'," Ms Kenny said.