THE young mother of three killed in a car crash which has left two of her sons in hospital was remembered today as a woman who made her family her universe.
Emma O'Keeffe (26) from Wilkinstown in Navan, Co Meath, died on Friday following the crash near her home between Nobber and Kingscourt.
The car she was driving was in a collision with a lorry the previous day.
Heartbroken family, neighbours and friends gathered at St. John the Baptist Church in Kilberry, Co Meath for her funeral today.
Parish priest Fr John O’Brien prayed for her husband and three sons Daniel, Adam and Logan.
"Daniel and Logan are still presently in Temple Street hospital, we obviously pray for their recovery today,” he said.
It emerged over the weekend that Robin O’Keeffe’s mother Eileen had taken ill. She collapsed of a suspected heart attack and was taken to hospital.
"We remember Robin’s mother Eileen too who is presently in hospital also. We pray for her recovery too today,” said Fr O’Brien.
Emma was remembered as a devoted wife and mother to Robin and their children.
"We are shocked and stunned, and in disbelief. Emma was taken in the prime of her life, so suddenly at the age of 26. It’s not supposed to happen.
"Parents will tell you that mothers and fathers are not supposed to bury their children. We are gobsmacked. We don’t have the words to explain it,” Fr O’Brien explained.
Symbols brought to the altar in Emma’s memory included a photograph of her sons which was taken at Christmas time. It was brought by Adam himself.
Some crochet and wool signified her love of knitting; a cake cutter showed her love for baking, and a bingo card symbolised her love of fun.
Emma was originally from Kilmainham, and lived in Kells and in Nobber in Co Meath before she and her husband Robin settled in Wilkinstown.
One of her sons, who was seriously injured, had surgery at Our Lady's Children's Hospital in Crumlin, Dublin, on Saturday.
"He is battling bravely and we are all praying for him at the moment. From what we are told the next 48 hours are crucial,” said a family friend.
After the funeral mass Emma’s remains were carried to the local cemetery for burial.