Thursday 23 November 2017

Classmates of youngest victims to lead the tributes at funeral service

Jodie Lee Daniels (15) who died in Buncrana pier tragedy
Jodie Lee Daniels (15) who died in Buncrana pier tragedy
Ruth Daniels
Sean McGrotty and Louise James, holding baby Rioghnach-Ann, with sons Evan (8) and Mark (12)

Greg Harkin

School friends of the three youngest victims of the Buncrana drownings tragedy will lead tributes at their funeral service today.

The joint funeral will take place for members of the Daniels/McGrotty family in Ballymagroarty, Derry at 2pm.

Sean McGrotty (46), his two sons Mark (12) and Evan, (8) and the boys' granny Ruth Daniels (59) all died in Sunday's disaster.

Mrs Daniels' daughter - 14-year-old Jodie-Lee - also died when the family's Audi jeep slid on algae on the slipway and went crashing into the sea.

Choirs from the schools attended by the three youngest victims will lead musical tributes during the Holy Thursday special service.

Louise, the boys' mother, will read a poem remembering the five family members she lost on Sunday evening.

They will be laid to rest in two graves at Derry's City Cemetery after the service.

Sean McGrotty will be buried alongside his sons in one grave, while Ruth Daniels will be laid to rest alongside her daughter Jodie-Lee.

The Catholic Primate Archbishop Eamon Martin, the former bishop of Derry, visited the family home in St Eithne's Park last night to help comfort Louise and other family members.

"At a time like this I realise that any words of mine are totally inadequate," said Dr Martin.

"The enormous tragedy that has struck this family has stunned us all into silence.

"All we can offer is our spiritual presence with them and the promise of our prayers. People from all over Ireland and beyond want to be close to all the bereaved in this time of grief."

Irish Independent

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