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Dublin: 18 °C Thursday 19 September, 2019
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'There is a place within us that is yours and yours always' - Clondalkin victims laid to rest

The five died in an apartment fire in Clondalkin last week.

The coffin of Annmarie O'Brien is taken into St Anne's Church.
The coffin of Annmarie O'Brien is taken into St Anne's Church.
Image: RollingNews.ie

IN THE UNSEASONABLE warmth they came – three hearses and five coffins serving as a reminder of the horror of last week.

When the bodies of 27-year-old Annemarie O’Brien, her unborn son AJ, her two-year-old daughter Paris and their cousins Jordan (4) and Holly (3) came into the car park of St Anne’s Church in Shankill, the scale of that horror became abundantly clear.

The five died in an apartment fire in Clondalkin last week.

With four white coffins at the altar, this was a tragedy which was painfully self-evident.

0509 Funeral_90505286 Jamie Sommers stands at a hearse at today's funeral. Source: Leah Farrell

Jordan and Holly’s mother Biddy remains in a critical condition in hospital and chief celebrant Father John O’Connor asked the congregation to keep her in their prayers.

Biddy is a very strong and intelligent person, but she now needs the love and support of all of us as never before and I know you won’t let her down.

He said that Biddy’s partner Jamie Sommers wanted the children to know that he would take care of their mother.

Jamie told me how much Jordan and Holly loved their mammy and how much she loved them. Jamie is obviously deeply upset by the death of his two beautiful children, but he is happy that they are together with God.

“They are together. They are not alone.

“He wants his children to know that he will look after their mammy and that they will be happy together.”

As a packed church watched on, the priest of the Parish of Travelling People Father Paul O’Driscoll paid a moving tribute to the victims.

“Dear Annemarie, Hannah Paris, AJ. Dear Jordan, Holly.

“When you joined our family, our hearts were so full of happiness that there was no room in us for words.

As you were growing, our hearts were so full of care that we spoke soothingly, sometimes sharply, fearful for your safety. But always, in the deepest places of our hearts, we spoke lovingly.

“We marvelled at all you did and became.

“There is a place within us that is yours and yours always.

For the light you brought to us, for the special gift you will ever be – thank you.

Shortly after the coffins, trailed by a sombre line of traffic, pulled away to Springfield Cemetery, where the victims will be laid to rest.

Read: ‘Jordan and Holly loved their Mammy’: Funeral of Clondalkin fire victims takes place in Shankill

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