The parents of a man who murdered his family before taking his own life say they did not delay the exhumation of his body.
Alan Hawe (40) killed his wife Clodagh (39) and children Liam (14), Niall (11) and Ryan (6) in a shocking murder-suicide at their Cavan home last August.
He then left a note on the back door of their Co Cavan home telling whoever called to the house to call the Gardai, and killed himself inside the house.
The family were all buried together side by side in the same plot in the small graveyard in St Mary’s Church in the town of Castlerahan.
But earlier today Alan Hawe’s body was was exhumed and later cremated in Dublin.
Now, in a statement released to Independent.ie, his family say that they have been the subject of threats from anonymous persons since the tragedy.
The Co Kilkenny family also insist that they played no part in the decision about where he was to be buried and claim they exhumed his body when requested to do so.
The statement, issued by solicitor Michael Lannigan, on behalf of the Hawe family confirmed: "This morning the exhumation of Alan Hawe took place on foot of a licence granted by Cavan County Council. The Hawe family had been requested by the Coll family to make that application. The Hawes agreed to same.
"The Hawe family had not previously been involved in the decision as to where Alan was buried."
The statement continued: "Over the last number of months the parents of Alan Hawe have received threats from persons unknown which have added to the devastating losses that that they have suffered of their son, grandchildren and daughter-in-law.
"They would hope that they, and the Coll family would now be left in peace."
Earlier it was revealed that Clodagh Hawe's sister Jacqueline Connolly and mother Mary Coll requested that Alan Hawe's remains be removed a short time after the funeral last September. A licence was granted in march to do so.
Ms Hawe's family had then requested that the body be removed ahead of her 40th birthday on Easter Sunday but this did not happen.
In their statement, the Hawe family denied that they alone decided when and how the body should be removed.
"The timing of the exhumation was decided by the professionals who dealt with the exhumation this morning and in that regard there was no substance to any suggestion that it was delayed for any reason by the Hawes.
"The Hawe family wish to thank the Cavan county council officials, the HSE officials and the gardaí who provided all possible assistance relating to this over the last couple of months."
The statement went on to say that the Hawe family now wish to be "left in peace" before adding the tragic deaths will be the subject of an inquest later this year.
Since their deaths the Clodagh's family have gone through a number of life events without them.
A source said: "Niall should should have done his confirmation in April. Liam should be preparing for his Junior Cert, all his class are doing it in a couple of weeks.
"And Clodagh should have celebrated her 40th last month."
Her sister Jacqueline Connolly and friends are planning to run the Women's Mini Marathon next month to raise funds for the Cavan Lighthouse.
Jacqueline told Independent.ie this morning: "Our beautiful Clodagh, Liam Niall and Ryan should still be alive. At least now they can finally rest in peace."
Since the incident, Clodagh's family have fundraised for Women's Aid. The family said they were hoping to help others.
Clodagh's sister Jacqueline Connolly said: "We are in the very early stages of setting up a committee with a view to doing the Women's Mini-Marathon in June in memory of Clodagh, Liam, Niall and Ryan. We hope to raise funds from this, with a view to setting up a refuge in Cavan."
Ms Connolly said there was no facility in Co Cavan for victims of domestic abuse.
"One woman a day from Cavan is turned away from other refuges due to lack of accommodation and facilities," she said.
On the funding page created earlier this year, the family wrote;
"Clodagh was strong and beautiful inside and out and was so loving.
"She was warm, loving, bright and capable and she was bringing her boys Liam, Niall and Ryan, up to have those same qualities. They will live on and her strength will live on.
"We want their deaths to help other women who are living in fear and isolation in their own homes. So please support our fundraising appeal for Women’s Aid.
"One in five women in Ireland experience domestic abuse and many women are isolated and alone.
"Women’s Aid runs the 24hr National Freephone Helpline 1800 341 900 which is a confidential service for women affected by domestic abuse.
"Their work makes a life-changing difference and we hope the donations made in Clodagh’s name will help them be there to listen, to believe and to support women. Every single time."
You can donate to Cavan Lighthouse here.
If you have been affected by any of the issues mentioned in this post, please feel free to contact Samaritans at 116 123 or by emailing email@example.com, or contact Women's Aid on freephone 1800 341 900