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IN PICTURES: 21 images that made us cry in 2014

An emotional rollercoaster through 2014.

IT’S NOT ALWAYS easy to tell which images will leave a lump in our throats.

They can capture a whole community’s sadness, the lifelong love of two women, or a single family’s agony.

It’s thousands of people in silent reflection, remembering a 25-year-old tragedy.

But it’s also the dignity of a father mourning the unimaginable death of his infant son.

It’s the age-old ritual of a little girl on her first day of school, but it’s also a community’s desperate plea for a beloved granddad to come home.

Here are just 21 of the images that brought a tear to our eyes in 2014:

15 January: Friends assembled at St Theresa’s church in Dublin city to share their grief and remembrances of Tom O’ Gorman, who was brutally killed at his home in Castleknock.

Tom O Gorman Vigils Source: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland

8 March: Brian O’Driscoll, with his daughter Sadie, says goodbye after his last home match for Ireland at the Aviva Stadium, a 46-7 win against Italy.

Brian OÕDriscoll with daughter Sadie at the end of the match Source: Billy Stickland/INPHO

13 April: Two days before the 25th anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster, Anfield observes an emotional minute’s silence in memory of the 96 people who lost their lives.

Soccer - Barclays Premier League - Liverpool v Manchester City - Anfield Source: PA Archive/Press Association Images

14 April: More than 200 schoolgirls are kidnapped by the Boko Haram terrorist group, sparking the global “Bring Back Our Girls” campaign. Eight months later, only a handful have returned home.

In this image, Martha Mark cries as she holds a photo of her kidnapped daughter Monica.

Nigeria Kidnapped Girls Source: AP/Press Association Images

12 June: Six-year-old Jake Brennan was knocked down and killed outside his own home in Kilkenny. His mother Roseann channelled her heartbreak into a campaign to lower speed limits in housing estates.

jake brennan 2 (1)

20 June: 13-year-old Ricky Osagie drowned in water near his house in Blanchardstown, after coming to the aid of two girls who got into difficulty there. He was hailed as a hero.

Ricky Osagie Funerals Scenes Source: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland

19 July: This horrifying photo of two-year-old Nema Abu al-Foul, the victim of an Israeli missile strike, brought home the human toll of the near two-month conflict in Gaza.

Mideast Palestinians Youngest Victims Photo Essay Source: AP/Press Association Images

29 July:  81-year-old Tom Kennedy went missing from his home in Finglas, north Dublin, sparking an extraordinary and determined search from family, friends, neighbours, and strangers who had taken him into their hearts.

Five months later, that search continues.

tommy Source: Missing person Thomas Kenney via Facebook

5 August: The World Health Organisation says more than 6,000 people have died in a West African Ebola epidemic that started in December 2013.

In this shocking photo, a victim of the disease lies dead and untouched on the streets of Monrovia in Liberia.

Liberia West Africa Ebola Source: AP/Press Association Images

12 August: We woke to the news that beloved American actor Robin Williams had been found dead at his home, after taking his own life.

There followed a worldwide outpouring of grief, exemplified by this father and son placing flowers at the “Mork and Mindy” house in Boulder, Colorado.

Robin Williams Tributes Source: AP/Press Association Images

20 August: Diane and John Foley are overcome with emotion at a press conference outside their home in Rochester, New Hampshire.

Their son, photojournalist James Foley, had been brutally executed by the Islamic State group in Syria days earlier.

Missing American Syria Source: AP/Press Association Images

28 August: On her very first day at Gardiner Street school, Kyra Duncan reminded us all just how hard growing up can be sometimes.

First Day of School. Little Kyra Duncan Source: Mark Stedman/Photocall Ireland

31 August: Dublin footballer Alan Brogan with his son Jamie, after the team’s defeat to Donegal in the All-Ireland semi-final.

Alan Brogan with his son Jamie after the game Source: James Crombie/INPHO

6 September: 91-year-old Vivian Boyack and 90-year-old Alice Nonie Dubes got married in Davenport, Iowa, after 72 years together.

Newlyweds in Their 90s Source: ASSOCIATED PRESS

6 October: 29-year-old Brittany Maynard recorded an extraordinary, and heart-breaking video, explaining why and how she was planning her own death, after a fight against a rare form of brain cancer.

This is the bedroom where she died, surrounded by her loved ones, on 1 November.

maynardbed Source: Compassion & Choices via YouTube

16 October: The country reacted in horror and disbelief when two-year-old Hassan Khan was found dead in an apartment in Ballybrack, South Dublin.

His mother was later charged over his death.

Here, Hassan’s father Saleem Khan is seen praying at his son’s funeral in Clonskeagh, surrounded by mourners.

Hassan Khan funeral in Clonskeagh Mosq Source: Leah Farrell/Photocall Ireland

21 October: Four-year-old Gavin Glynn captured the love and support of the whole country this year, after his family launched the #MyBoy campaign to help raise funds for his cancer treatment in the US.

Sadly, Gavin passed away on 21 October.

10474689_705256952861400_8204644961414551087_n Source: Team Gavin Glynn

23 October: Mourners in London pay tribute to 14-year-old Alice Gross, whose body was found on 1 October, after she went missing in August, sparking what the Metropolitan Police called their largest operation since the July 7 bombings in 2005.

Alice Gross funeral Source: Dominic Lipinski

12 November: A heart-wrenching video of Chris Picco singing to his newborn son Lennon went viral throughout the world in November.

Picco’s wife Ashley had died after giving birth to their son in an emergency C-Section.

Tragically, Lennon passed away himself, just four days later.

5492df1f-a486-4020-b814-46a40cd524aa Source: Ashley Picco Memorial Fund via YouCaring

21 November: 85-year-old Carmen Martinez Ayudo was evicted from her Madrid home, where she had lived for 50 years.

Photographers captured the devastating scenes.

Spain Elderly Eviction Source: AP/Press Association Images

27 November: The family of 38-year-old Cystic Fibrosis sufferer Helen Taylor spoke to TheJournal.ie about her fight for a double lung transplant, as her condition worsened following a chest infection.

Her son Luke’s Christmas wish that “his Mammy gets new lungs.”

Sadly, Helen died on 27 November.

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About the author:

Dan MacGuill

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