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Former Taoiseach Garret FitzGerald remembered at State funeral

President Mary McAleese, Taoiseach Enda Kenny and the entire cabinet were among mourners at the funeral of Dr FitzGerald which took place in Donnybrook in Dublin. He died last Thursday, aged 85.

Image: Niall Carson/PA Wire/Press Association Images

THE FUNERAL HAS taken place of two-time former Taoiseach Garret FitzGerald who died earlier this week.

FitzGerald was remembered at a mass at the Sacred Heart Church in Donnybrook in Dublin this afternoon.

The president Mary McAleese was in attendance as was the Taoiseach Enda Kenny – who gave a reading – and the entire government cabinet.

Former Taoisigh including Brian Cowen, Bertie Ahern, John Bruton, Albert Reynolds, and Liam Cosgrave attended as did many friends and former political colleagues of the former Fine Gael leader who also served as Minister for Foreign Affairs.

Many members of the FitzGerald family who were in attendance contributed to the mass with psalms, prayers and the offertory procession.

Fr Enda McDonagh delivered the oration in which he described the former Taoiseach as one of the “outstanding leaders” of the country’s recent history.

He praised everything from his work in securing the Anglo-Irish agreement in 1985 to his great love of good wine and hospitality and of his family and his late wife Joan.

Gifts delivered during the offertory procession included Dr FitzGerald’s political manifesto, his autobiography, pictures of him playing with his great-grandchild and, touchingly, a copy of an Aer Lingus timetable.

The former Taoiseach used to work for the airline.

Former President and friend Mary Robinson and former Minister for Foreign Affairs Peter Barry were among those who read the Prayers of the Faithful along with other members of Dr FitzGerald’s family.

Friends of the grandchildren of the late Dr FitzGerald made up the choir in the Dublin 4 church.

Pianist Hugh Tinney also performed as the congregation received Holy Communion.

FitzGerald’s children John, Mark and Mary all delivered a few words after the Holy Communion thanking those who looked after him in his final days as well as those who had met him throughout the course of his life.

He was laid to rest at Shanganagh Cemetery in Co Dublin, beside his late wife Joan.

About the author:

Hugh O'Connell

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