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Thursday 22 March 2018

Lovable charmer 'exploited by wrong people' laid to rest

Colm Kelpie

A father of one abducted and murdered over a suspected drugs debt was yesterday remembered as a character and a charmer who had been exploited by the wrong people.

Ciaran Noonan's body was found in farmland in Co Meath on November 4 after he was beaten and bundled into a car in broad daylight a fortnight previously.

Hundreds of people packed St Luke the Evangelist Church in Mulhuddart in Dublin for the 29-year-old's funeral Mass, where Fr Derek Darby told mourners the violent death could not be justified.

"No one should be in any doubt that this terrible deed is morally wrong and indefensible, and no cause, no reason, should ever justify the way that Ciaran's life ended," he said.

Friends and family mingled in the grounds of the Dublin church while the hearse was escorted through the neighbourhood streets by five truck cabs pumping their horns, in tribute to the truck lover.

The front of the lead vehicle was emblazoned with the words "RIP Ciaran, Always remembered by your mates."

Inside the small church, mourners lined the aisles as Fr Darby paid a poignant tribute to Mr Noonan, touching on his generous and lovable personality before drugs had changed his life.

As a smiling photo of Ciaran lay on top of his coffin, Fr Darby talked of the devastation his death had wreaked on his distraught parents, Willie and Geraldine, his brother Damian, and his daughter.

And he referred to his struggle to overcome the addiction that had cost him so dearly.

"Ciaran made a series of wrong choices, exploited by the wrong people, and it took hold of his life," he said.

"Ciaran knew that he was hurting himself, he knew that he was hurting his family, but he never wanted to hurt anyone.

"And he tried on numerous occasions to overcome it."

He said that when Mr Noonan's wallet was returned to his family, it contained a lottery ticket, a prayer for addicts, and a prayer to Mary.

Fr Darby said his grieving parents prayed that no other family would experience their pain, and they wanted to urge other parents to "instil in their children the confidence to say no".


Mr Noonan was an average young man growing up, who got into harmless fun, Fr Darby said.

"He was in the words of his dad, a character, a charmer, someone who was affectionate, sociable and lovable," he said.

"When not consumed by the life that had engulfed him in recent years, he was generous, and would give the shirt of his back."

'Amazing Grace' and 'Westlife's You'll Raise me Up' were among the songs performed during the Mass before Mr Noonan's remains were removed to St Declan's Cemetery in Ashbourne for burial.

Mr Noonan was attacked and bundled into the back of a black Volkswagen Golf in broad daylight last month after visiting his aunt's house in the East Wall area of Dublin.

He was beaten with an iron bar and then abducted by three men because he allegedly owed money to the leader of a drug gang.

Irish Independent

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