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Co Armagh

Elderly couple found dead at their Portadown home laid to rest

Michael and Marjorie Cawdery, both aged 83, had been together for over 55 years.

pjimage (13) Michael and Marjorie Cawdery. PSNI PSNI

A JOINT FUNERAL service has been held for Michael and Lilian ‘Marjorie’ Cawdery.

Family and friends paid tribute to the ‘intellectual’ Michael and the ‘humorous and warm’ Marjorie, who were both devoted to their family.

The elderly couple, both aged 83, were found killed in their home at Portadown, Co Armagh two weeks ago.

40-year-old man has been charged with a number of offences including two counts of murder and aggravated burglary.

A large number of mourners attended the service today, which was held in Drumcree Parish Church, Portadown and conducted by Reverend Gary Galway.

Mourners arrived for the funeral from the USA, Isle of Man, Britain and many parts of Ireland to honour the couple’s memory.

Family members present included Michael’s brother Paddy, his sister Sally and Marjorie’s brother Ned, plus their three children Shirley, Wendy and Graham, son-in-laws Brian and Charles, and four grandchildren, Peter, Calum, Alex and Tasha.

The service included the hymn Abide with Me marking Michael’s early education at Portora Royal School, Enniskillen and Morning Has Broken was also sung, which was a favourite of Marjorie’s.

Colin Wilkins, Marjorie’s nephew, delivered her eulogy describing Marjorie as “one of the most lovable people that I will ever know.

“The best words to describe Marjorie are ‘kind’ and ‘lovely’ – and her greatest quality – loving kindness.

Marjorie was an incredibly soft-hearted, patient and generous person. She was a delight to be around.
She loved life and made everyone around her happy, with her positive sense of fun – and the fact that she was always more interested in other people rather than herself.
Nobody who knew Marjorie will ever forget how special she was – we will carry memories of her in our hearts forever.


In his eulogy for his brother, Paddy said that Michael “possessed a bright and inquisitive mind. To the end, he was engaged in using his skills to the benefit of others through the medical and veterinary communities in Britain and Ireland.”

Reverend Galway also paid tribute to the couple in his address, saying that the community had rallied around each other in the wake of the tragedy.

“A person once said that it is not words but actions that speak louder and to witness love in action is a beautiful thing.

I have witnessed this love in action through the family, through friends, through the church and through the community and I have to say it is beautiful.

No one can dispute that a horrible act was committed and the family have been devastated by such an act, but they remain resilient and continue to be such a comfort and strength to each other.”

Following the funeral, the committal at Roselawn Crematorium will be strictly private at the request of the family.

The family thanked the community in Upper Ramone Park, Portadown and wider afield for their simple acts of remembrance – such as leaving flowers.

The family added:

“We are still deeply shocked by the terrible events of 26 May, and it will take time to accept them.

But we are pleased that so many people have contacted us to pay tribute to Michael, a man of enormous intellect and hands-on ability who never ceased learning, and Marjorie his devoted wife and partner for over 55 years.

“We remember her as a gentle, warm and humorous mother and grandmother.”

Read: ‘Incomprehensible’: Elderly couple killed in home named as Michael and Marjorie Cawdery

Read: 40-year-old man charged after couple in their 80s found dead in house

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