Thursday 18 January 2018

Wife and children now together forever

Alan Hawe with his wife Clodagh and their children Liam (15), Niall (11) and Ryan (6)
Alan Hawe with his wife Clodagh and their children Liam (15), Niall (11) and Ryan (6)
Conor Feehan

Conor Feehan

The murder and suicide that claimed the mother, father and three children of the Hawe family in Cavan shocked the country.

There was immense sorrow for Clodagh and her sons Liam, Niall and Ryan, but opinion on Alan Hawe was split.

There were some who felt a mental illness or breakdown were behind his actions, and he should therefore be remembered with compassion - and those who believed he was an evil man felt he deserved to be hated.

Amid the intense grief, and the understandable lack of ability to comprehend his actions, the family were buried side by side, the three boys in the middle with a parent at each end.

Mr Hawe's body has now been removed from the grave at the request of Mrs Hawe's family, and with the understanding of Mr Hawe's family.

Daylight had barely broken yesterday when the bucket of a mechanical digger first penetrated the earth over Mr Hawe's grave. In the quiet cemetery at the back of St Mary's Church in the townland of Castlerahan, work began at 5.30am to remove his coffin. By 9am, as the church bell rang in the cut stone belfry above, the digger had finished replacing the clay back over the now empty grave and workers were levelling it with a rake and planting grass seed on it.

The heat from the sun was drying the clay, and blending it back to the colour of the earth above Mrs Hawe and the children. The wooden surround around what was five graves was also adjusted inwards to encompass the four remaining graves, excluding where Mr Hawe's body had lain.

When the diggers and tractors moved away the grave looked neat once more, just one plot shorter, and it would be difficult to know anything had happened bar some faint tyre tracks beside the plot.

Irish Independent

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