Final goodbyes to 'star who shone bright from beginning'
A star who shone bright from the very beginning. President Micheal D Higgins's description of The Cranberries singer Dolores O'Riordan resonated with the hundreds of mourners who travelled to Cross's Funeral Home, in Ballyneety, Co Limerick, yesterday to pay their respects to the singer.
Fans, neighbours and parents who knew her from the school gates, child minders, fleeting acquaintances and lifelong friends all gathered to say goodbye to the 46-year-old mother-of-three.
They spoke of her talent, her kindness, her humour, generosity of spirit, and, of course, her voice.
President Higgins had travelled to Limerick early in the day to meet privately with her mother Eileen and her family, and sign one of four books of condolences.
"It is to the incredible credit of all those who have appreciated the music and the songs and the performances and the band, that they have come out in such numbers to make their tribute," President Higgins said. "Limerick is very, very proud of (her)."
The much-loved singer was laid out in an open coffin in Ballyneety. Rosary beads were carefully wrapped around her hands, and beside her stood several photographs - one of her meeting with the late Pope John Paul II, and others of her onstage.
The three remaining members of The Cranberries - Mike and Noel Hogan and Fergal Lawlor - joined her five brothers and sister at the funeral home.
Her partner Ole Koretsky, who played with her in the alt-rock band DARK, was also present.
Kay Duffy, her former housekeeper, was among those who arrived at the funeral home ahead of the removal.
Today, hundreds of fans and leading figures in the Irish music industry are expected to attend the singer's funeral Mass in St Ailbe's Church, Ballybricken.