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John Keenan’s coffin was transported in a carriage pulled by four horses. Alamy Stock Photo

Boxers form guard of honour at funeral for John Keenan (16) who died in Galway pier tragedy

John Keenan died together with two other teenagers when their car entered the water at Menlo Pier in the early hours of Saturday.

BOXERS FORMED A guard of honour at the funeral of one of three teenage boys who died when their car entered the water at a pier in Galway at the weekend.

The funeral for John Keenan, 16, took place at the Church of the Resurrection, Ballinfoyle, on the outskirts of Galway this morning.

A funeral for Christopher Stokes, 19, will take place at the same church on Thursday.

The pair, along with Wojciech Panek, 17, died after their car entered the water at Menlo Pier, north of Galway city, at around 2.40am on Saturday.

Wojciech Panek’s ashes are set to be interred at Calvary Cemetery, Graiguenamanagh, Co Kilkenny on Friday.

As mourners gathered for the funeral of John Keenan today, the Olympic Boxing Club formed a guard of honour outside the church for the former Galway County Champion.

His coffin was transported in a carriage pulled by four horses, with his picture displayed.

Addressing mourners, Father Kevin Blade said the sad news of John Keenan’s death had caused devastation, and he expressed his sympathies to the Stokes and Panek families.

“There are occasions in life when no words seem fitting, when we enter total sadness and desolation, when we are almost numbed speechless,” he said.

floral-tributes-outside-the-church-of-the-resurrection-ballinfoyle-in-galway-ahead-of-the-funeral-of-john-keenan-john-16-died-with-two-other-teenagers-when-a-car-they-were-travelling-in-entered-th Floral tributes outside the Church of the Resurrection, Ballinfoyle in Galway. Alamy Stock Photo Alamy Stock Photo

“And since Saturday, that’s exactly what everyone in Galway and right across the country have felt.”

He said the church had witnessed many sad, tragic funerals over the years, adding: “But few can have been as profoundly sad and sorrowful as the funerals of two young parishioners and the tragic death of three young people.”

Father Blade went on to describe John Keenan as having had a remarkable impact on others during his short life.

“We all knew John was a unique and extraordinary young lad, full of life and vitality,” he said.

“Gentle in his relationships with others, gifted with a good sense of humour, always sensitive and attentive to the needs of others.

“John was a young lad who touched the lives and hearts of many people in so many different ways.

“Pious words and platitudes ring hollow on occasions like this.

“John’s death touches the whole community and there is a special love and feeling for John’s family and friends.”

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