Bill O'Herlihy's wife and daughters lead mourners in sorrowful goodbye to legendary broadcaster
President Michael D Higgins led mourners at the funeral of the legendary Bill O'Herlihy today.
The service at the church of Our Lady of Perpetual Succour in Dublin's Foxrock saw the panel - Bill's "dysfunctional family, the three amigos" - as chief celebrant Fr Tom O'Keeffe quipped - gather together one last time to say a sad farewell.
Amongst those carrying the coffin was pundit Liam Brady while Eamon Dunphy and John Giles each said a prayer of the faithful.
Bill's Après Match Alter Ego, Risteard Cooper, was amongst mourners at the funeral of the iconic broadcaster who passed away in his sleep last Monday at the age of 76.
The Taoiseach was represented by his Aide de Camp, Kieran Carey.
Arts Minister Heather Humphries was in attendance.
Also there were a host of RTE top executives and sports presenters including Marty Morrissey, Ryle Nugent, Peter Collins and Hugh Cahill; former Fianna Fáil TD Mary Hanafin; Film producer Lelia Doolan and broadcaster Miriam O'Callaghan who came with her mother Clara.
Hillary O'Herlihy and daughters Sally and Jill accompanied the remains on the emotional journey from the family home to the Church of Our Lady of Perpetual Succour in Dublin's Foxrock.
Fr O Keeffe told mourners that Bill's strong faith had led him to work on a programme exposing illegal moneylenders who had preyed on the poor.
"He was prepared to take the rap and stand his ground with integrity when people in higher places were often indifferent," said Fr O'Keeffe.
Bill saw the 'hand of God' in events which saw him moved from current affairs to the sports department "where he flourished", he added.
Flags at RTE were flown at half mast throughout the day.
Former Miss Ireland Olivia Treacy and Newstalk presenter George Hook were also at the funeral.
Yesterday other famous faces paid their respects to the deceased at Flanagan’s Funeral Home in Dundrum, Dublin.
Broadcaster Pat Kenny revealed he had been in talks with Bill in the hope that he would come in as a panellist for his Newstalk radio show.
The sports anchor had poignantly asked for “a chance to have a rest” after his retirement before he took on a new challenge.
“But it was never to be,” Kenny reflected. “He had a brilliant career.”
Kenny noted that he had never heard anyone say a bad word about the RTE sports presenter.
“In a business that is very cynical, there was no cynicism about Bill,” he said.
Kenny was one of many well-known personalities who turned yesterday ahead of today’s funeral.
Former footballer Niall Quinn and TD Michael Lowry also paid tribute to O’Herlihy along with Gay Byrne and World Athletics Championships gold medallist Eamonn Coghlan.
O’Herlihy is survived by his wife Hilary, daughters Jill and Sally and five grandchildren.