We're sorry -- but we don't know why Robert shot his ex, says grieving sister
THE sister of a man who shot dead his ex-girlfriend before killing himself said yesterday her "shocked" family was "very sorry" for his actions but had no explanation for them.
Robert Hartery's devastated sister, Anne-Marie, said they had "no explanation" for the tragic events that unfolded in Cloonfad, Co Roscommon, at the weekend.
While the 45-year-old was laid to rest after funeral Mass in his local church in Grangemockler, Co Tipperary, in Cloonfad, the 11-year-old daughter of Sarah Regan broke down in tears as she said a prayer for her dead mum.
Mr Hartery shot Sarah Regan (30) in the head while she sat in her parked car in Cloonfad after he tricked her into meeting him in the cul-de-sac of a ghost housing estate. She didn't know she was meeting her ex-boyfriend -- and he had gone to some efforts to conceal his identity, shaving his moustache and using another SIM card to text her, pretending to be a casual acquaintance.
Mr Hartery left three children behind from a previous relationship and Ms Regan is survived by her two children, eight-year-old Dylan and Shannan (11).
Yesterday, Mr Hartery's sister Anne-Marie said her family were "very sorry" for what he had done. "We will forgive you, we love you, we always did and always will," she said in a eulogy.
Meanwhile, in St Patrick's Church in Cloonfad, hundreds of mourners heard how Ms Regan was a mother who adored her children. She was "lovable" and "full of fun", said parish priest Fr Joe Feeney.
Among the chief mourners were: parents, Tom and Ann; sisters, Lisa and Emma; her children Dylan and Shannan, and their father John.
Fr Feeney said Ms Regan's death was a "senseless act of violence" that had cut short her young life. The tragic events had brought a prayer to everyone's lips for Sarah's children and the rest of the family.
"Everybody seems to be affected but the grief, heartbreak and sorrow is all the greater for you Sarah's family," Fr Feeney said.
Sarah, Fr Feeney said, was "so young to die; she had a life before her".
"What a tragedy that an act of senseless violence cut that life short," he said.
Personal items, including make-up, a mobile phone, family pictures, and a mug, brought up as offertory gifts also gave some sense of the popular, loving, and adoring mother that Ms Regan was.
Her daughter, Shannan, broke down as she said a prayer for her mother and wished that her mum would "sleep in peace".