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Thursday 23 November 2017

Thousands pay respect to 'master of the word' Farrell

Eimear Ni Bhraonain

HE will be fondly remembered as a "master of the word" with an interest in ordinary people.

Well-known reporter Kevin Farrell was laid to rest in his hometown of Edenderry in Co Offaly yesterday, where a crowd of 1,000 paid their respects.

One of Mr Farrell's final wishes was to leave the church to a rendition of 'Lovely Leitrim' by his friend, country music singer Larry Cunningham.

While Mr Cunningham was too ill to attend yesterday's Mass, he sent a heartfelt message to say he was there "in spirit" before a recording of the tune was played.

The father of three passed away on the same day that the 'Offaly Express' newspaper printed its final edition.

The 'Offaly Express' was where Mr Farrell started out as a journalist before going to work in a number of regional and national newspapers, ending up in 'The Irish Daily Star'.

Insight

Speaking after his burial, his former editor at the 'Star' Ger Colleran said Mr Farrell had a "profound interest in ordinary people". Mr Colleran described how it was this quality that gave the reporter an "insight into what would make a good story".

Mourners heard how Mr Farrell was a "community man" who helped many families. He also had a "natural flair" for promoting bands and worked in the music business from a young age.

Elvis impersonator Greg Traynor described how he had lost a "dear friend".

"He was a master of the word but we are left with very few words, if any, to describe the loss of Kevin Farrell," he said.

Mr Farrell (62) died early on Monday evening after a battle with cancer. He had survived a liver transplant three years ago but he was diagnosed with cancer and his health deteriorated in recent months. He is survived by his wife Eileen, daughter Sinead and sons David and Kevin Jnr.

Irish Independent

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