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Heartbroken family of stabbed student pay funeral tribute to 'their unique buddy'

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Farewell: The remains of Cameron Blair are carried from St Mary’s Church, Bandon. Photo: Michael Mac Sweeney/Provision

Farewell: The remains of Cameron Blair are carried from St Mary’s Church, Bandon. Photo: Michael Mac Sweeney/Provision

Farewell: The remains of Cameron Blair are carried from St Mary’s Church, Bandon. Photo: Michael Mac Sweeney/Provision

The heartbroken family of an accomplished student and athlete who died in a Cork stabbing hailed him as "their buddy" and someone they were deeply proud to call a son and brother.

Hundreds gathered at St Peter's Church in Bandon for the funeral service of Cameron Blair (20), who died after he was stabbed in the neck during a house party on Cork's Bandon Road on January 16.

The second-year chemical engineering student at Cork Institute of Technology (CIT) died despite desperate efforts by doctors to save him.

The mourners were led by his heartbroken parents, Noel and Kathy, and his younger brother, Alan.

Noel Blair said the young man was as much his buddy as his son.

"Cameron - my darling son. When you were a small boy I used to call you my 'buddy'. You grew up to be a fine young man. I was so proud to be your father," he said.

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A special guard of honour lined the street as the funeral cortège passed Bandon Rugby Club. Photo: Michael Mac Sweeney/Provision

A special guard of honour lined the street as the funeral cortège passed Bandon Rugby Club. Photo: Michael Mac Sweeney/Provision

"You lived life to the full...you were a loyal friend, a protective brother and a beautiful boy. You were unique and nothing can replace you. Rest in peace Cameron."

Mother Kathy read the poem 'Stop All The Clocks' by WH Auden in tribute to her son.

"Cameron - you were my north, my south, my east, my west - my working week and my Sunday rest. My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song, I thought our world would last forever - I was wrong. Sleep peacefully my sweet child."

Alan Blair fought back tears as he paid a tribute to his protective big brother.

"My dear brother... I adored you since I was small and the day you left us was the saddest day of all," he said.

"My keeper of secrets, you were loyal to the end and I always thought of you as my best friend. I never thought I would see the day when you were not there to show me the way. Sleep tight Cam."

The funeral service was led by Rev Anne Skuse. "Cameron had within his soul a deep kindness and care for others; a generosity of spirit that shone so bright this week as so many people, both young and old, recalled small acts of loving kindness that he had shown to them; acts of kindness that were done quietly, without wishing to draw any attention to himself," she said.

Church of Ireland Bishop of Cork, Cloyne and Ross Dr Paul Colton told mourners the last time he had been with Cameron in St Peter's Church was for his confirmation ceremony seven years ago.

Special guards of honour were provided by Bandon Grammar School, Hamilton High School, Bandon Rugby Club, Bandon Athletic Club and CIT.

Irish Independent