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Tommy's grief as parents die just hours apart

SINGER Tommy Fleming is mourning the deaths of both his parents within hours of each other.

The performer suffered a double bereavement late last week after rushing home from the UK to be at his sick mother's bedside.

He flew home after learning his mother Annie (83) was seriously ill and was with her when she passed away peacefully at Sligo General Hospital on Friday.


However, tragically Tommy's father then became unwell and the family from Aclare, Co Sligo, were gathered in grief again.

Paddy Fleming (86) passed away just a few hours after his wife with whom he celebrated their golden wedding anniversary just a few week earlier.

Annie's funeral was originally due to take place yesterday -- but was moved to today so she could be buried alongside her husband. Tommy (40) said his parents had been devoted to each other, and to their family.

"It has been a very tough week for my family and I cannot construct a word or sentence that describes how all this feels," he said.

Tommy rose to fame in the early 1990s after he was asked to tour the US with Phil Coulter.

He established himself as a solo artist and found success singing traditional Irish music.

Most recently, he was back on television as one of the stars of RTE's Celebrity Bainisteoir.

He lives in Enniscrone, Co Sligo, with his wife Tina and is the youngest of six siblings.

His parents will be buried together after funeral mass at the Church of the Holy Rosary, Kilmactigue, with burial afterwards in the adjoining cemetery. The family have asked that donations in lieu of flowers be made to Kilmactigue Cemetery Committee.