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Murdered vet's family return to thank her pals

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Catherine Gowing. Photo: PA

Catherine Gowing. Photo: PA

Catherine Gowing. Photo: PA

THE sister of murdered Offaly vet Catherine Gowing says her family are "coping".

Members of the Gowing family returned to north Wales over the weekend to thank Catherine's friends and colleagues.

Her sister, Emma Maguire, said they will be forever grateful to the people of Wales for their compassion after Catherine (37) was murdered last October.

The church of Our Lady of the Rosary in Buckley was full on Saturday for a Mass in Catherine's honour.

Emma, who was joined by her husband Shay, said the service had been a "beautiful representation" of Catherine.

COLLEAGUES

"The stories we have shared have illuminated Catherine's spirit, her soul but also her child-like sense of fun and joy," she said.

Catherine moved to Flintshire in north Wales 18 months before she was killed.

Her colleagues at DE Evans Vets organised the service to allow those who knew Catherine to share happy memories and to say goodbye to the much-loved vet.

Father Francis Doyle, who led the service, said Catherine made a "tremendous and lasting impression" on everyone she met.

Carol Davies, a friend and colleague, was among those who helped arrange the service.

"I have many happy memories of Catherine which I will cherish," she said.

"Catherine loved her films and music. She would always be humming a tune or singing something," she added.

Some 300 people attended the service, including children from St David's Catholic Primary School in Mold who sang All Things Bright And Beautiful.

Photographs of Catherine and lighted candles were placed at the front of the nave, and the congregation sang some of Catherine's favourite hymns, including Amazing Grace and Calon Lan.

Barbara Elder, a secretary at the surgery where Catherine worked, and Fran Edwards gave readings and veterinary nurse Kate Kinread told how she and Catherine would pull practical jokes on one another.

REMAINS

Catherine was murdered by Clive Sharp at the home in Cae Isa, New Brighton she shared with Jane Doyle, who was Sharp's partner and her friend and colleague.

Sharpe, who lived in nearby Bethesda, dismembered Catherine's body after killing her.

Some of her remains were found in a shallow pool in Sealand and on the banks of the River Dee near Chester.

Sharp was jailed for life in February at Mold Crown Court.

Catherine's funeral was held in her native Co Offaly in January.

Her sister Emma said the family would always be grateful for the love, compassion and support shown to them by the people of North Wales.

"On behalf of my parents, Maureen and John, Shay and myself, thank you," she said.

Emma said the service had been a "beautiful representation" of her sister.

She said: "It has been wonderful to be back and to be here with all of Catherine's friends and colleagues.

"Our family are deeply grateful for the kindness and love that the people of North Wales have shown us," said Emma.

hnews@herald.ie


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