Sunday 22 April 2018

Body of backpacker Danielle is finally back with her family

Danielle McLaughlin
Danielle McLaughlin

Stephen Maguire

TRAGIC Irish backpacker Danielle McLaughlin will be laid to rest later this week.

Family and friends of Ms McLaughlin, who was murdered two weeks ago while on a trip to India, stood in respectful silence as her remains finally arrived at her home in Buncrana, Co Donegal, last night.

The 28-year-old was strangled to death in Goa.

Neighbours in the close-knit Inishowen peninsula town have rallied around Danielle's heartbroken mum, Andrea, and her four younger sisters.

Danielle's remains arrived back in Dublin on Friday morning, but underwent a second post-mortem at her family's request before being taken to Belfast for medical procedures.

In brilliant late March sunshine, Danielle's remains were taken from Belfast and arrived home as light was fading in the border town.

Just after 7.30pm, Danielle's remains arrived in a black hearse, which was given a garda escort.

In a low-key removal, her remains were taken home in a wicker coffin.

Local priest Fr Francis Bradley arrived at the family home a short time before Danielle's cortege and said prayers inside the home.

Her mother Andrea said earlier this week that she would not fully grasp her eldest daughter's death until she held her hand.

Andrea said she just knew that her eldest daughter had died when her friend Louise McMenamin arrived at her home in Marian Park.

"I knew as soon as I saw her. As soon as she walked in the door I told her. She did not even get the chance to tell me," she said.

"It feels as if it was a year ago and if it was yesterday. It will only get to sink in when I get to hold her hand."

Large crowds are expected at her wake, which will take place at her family home from 10am until 10pm today and tomorrow.

Her funeral has been scheduled for Thursday at 11am at Cockhill Chapel.


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