Monday 9 December 2019

Thanks for the lovely support - 'Shell shocked' Shane McGowan speaks after mum dies in car crash

Shane MacGowan with his mother Therese. Photo: Getty Images
Shane MacGowan with his mother Therese. Photo: Getty Images
Melanie Finn

Melanie Finn

Pogues singer Shane MacGowan has thanked friends and family for their support following the sudden death of his mother Therese.

The 87-year-old was killed when the car she was driving struck a wall near Nenagh, Co Tipperary, around 3pm last Sunday.

It is believed Therese may have suffered a heart attack before crashing her Toyota Avensis at Ballintoher, on the outskirts of the town.

The 59-year-old singer was last night being supported by his long-term girlfriend Victoria Mary Clarke, who issued a message on his behalf as he tried to come to terms with the news.

"Shane MacGowan would like to say thank you and God bless you to all the people who are offering kind words and condolences. It means a lot," she wrote.

"People are being overwhelmingly lovely and kind. Thank you."

A source close to the star said he has been left "devastated" by his mum's death, which was also the first road death of 2017.

"He just can't believe it, it's the worst news possible. She's the reason he got into music in the first place and she's supported him through thick and thin over the years.

"He's shell-shocked by this, it's obviously hit him very hard." she said.

Tributes have poured in to the band's official site. Thousands of fans of the star sympathised with his sudden loss as the story made headlines around the world.

His elderly mother was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash. Her remains were taken to University Hospital Limerick for a post-mortem examination.

Funeral arrangements have not yet been finalised for the mother-of-two.

Read more: 'It means a lot' - Shane MacGowan acknowledges support after death of his mother in crash

But she is expected to be laid to rest in her native home of Tipperary towards the end of the week.

Gardaí have appealed for witnesses to the crash to contact them.

Mrs MacGowan was originally from Tipperary while her husband was from Dublin.

They spent some of the early years of their marriage in England, where Shane was born, before moving back to Tipperary.

Shane celebrated his 59th birthday on Christmas Day and had appeared to be in good spirits lately.

He was at an annual fundraising event for Focus Ireland shortly before Christmas.

This is the second recent tragedy to hit The Pogues star, after the band's former manager Frank Murray died on December 22. Mr Murray will be laid to rest at a ceremony at Mount Argus today.

MacGowan has previously spoken about how his mother influenced his music career.

"I came from a musical family and we always sang and most people played an instrument," he said.

Irish Independent

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