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Friends bid sad farewell to tragic 'Balcony Belle' Carol

A DUBLIN grandmother who died after a suspected savage beating in her Ballybough home has been remembered as a hard-working and house-proud woman who lived her life to the full.

Gardai are investigating the death of Carol McAuley (54) who had spent almost a month in a coma in hospital with severe haemorrhaging on the brain.

She was taken to A&E on the morning of July 25 with "horrific and indescribable injuries", according to an informed source.

hospitalised

She died on Thursday last week, August 21, nearly a month after being hospitalised.

Gardai are treating her death as suspicious and a full-scale investigation is underway as they work on the theory that Carol was the "victim of a bad assault".

At her funeral mass in St Laurence O'Toole church on Seville Place in Dublin's north inner city yesterday, mourners heard Carol described as a woman who worked several jobs when her children were small to support the family she loved so much.

Carol (inset) used to be a member of the Balcony Belles acting group, formed in the community by mothers many years ago, one of whom paid tribute to her at the end if the mass.

"You were special to all of us in our own little ways and you will never be forgotten.

"Sleep tight with the angels beautiful lady," said Carol's friend Val to loud applause from around the packed church.

A photograph of Carol was placed on her coffin before the funeral.

The mass was also attended by Lord Mayor Christy Burke.

One story told at the mass was that Carol was so house-proud that if she visited somebody she would automatically start cleaning up their house too.

Many mourners, including the members of the Balcony Belles, wore purple ribbons in Carol's memory.

A piper played as Carol's coffin was brought from the church flanked by members of the Balcony Belles.

A white carriage, pulled by two white horses, brought her remains to Fingal cemetery for burial.

Five people, including a man and a woman known to Carol and who were in the Ballybough Road property on both July 24 and 25, have been interviewed by gardai.

Ms McAuley was found in her bed in the early hours of July 25 with injuries to her face and head.

She also had marks around her eyes and ears.

Gardai have been given an account that the day before she was taken to hospital, she had been involved in an altercation.

Critical

When she woke up on July 25 complaining that she felt unwell, an ambulance was called.

"She had suspected severe haemorrhaging on the brain and when she arrived in hospital her condition was described as critical," said a senior source.

Carol is survived by her daughter Lisa, and sons Gary and Jonathon.

cfeehan@herald.ie


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