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Hundreds brave Croagh Patrick in Ian's memory

HUNDREDS of people turned out to take part in a memorial climb of Croagh Patrick in memory of the late adventurer Ian McKeever over the weekend.

Friends of the tragic climber organised the event to allow people remember and celebrate the Wicklow man's life on the mountain he had loved.

The Mayo mountain has long been associated with Mr McKeever who climbed the Reek a record 35 times in 80 hours in back in 2011 as part of the Croagh Patrick Seven Day Challenge for Autism.

Organiser Matt Loughrey said it was a fitting way to remember their lost friend and was thrilled as more than 300 people turned out. "We knew we wanted to do something to remember Ian. We had a lot of close friends and lots of people who had just met him the once.

"All the way up the mountain all the talk was of Ian, great stories, funny and positive."

A mass was held in the small church at the summit shortly after 1pm on Saturday.

Paul Devaney, who is undertaking the Seven Summits challenge, took part in the event.

"We have Everest and the Antarctic left. We know he'll be with us every step of the way," Mr Devaney said.

Mr McKeever died tragically when he was struck by lightening as he climbed Kilimanjaro in Tanzania last month.