Murders in Limerick have “left a trail of devastation behind”, Priest tells funeral mass

Murders in Limerick have “left a trail of devastation behind”, Priest tells funeral mass
Patrick O'Connor funeral mass in Limerick this morning.

By David Raleigh

The murder of a young Limerick man in a crowded bar in Limerick last weekend was “brutal” and “futile”, his funeral mass heard today, Friday.

Patrick ‘Pa’ O’Connor, (24), was fatally stabbed by another man in Fitzgerald's Bar, Thomondgate, in Limerick, last Saturday.

Mr O’Connor died from his injuries in hospital in the early hours of last Sunday.

At today’s funeral mass, Canon Donal McNamara, St Munchin’s Church, offered Mr O’Connor’s heartbroken family his “deepest heartfelt sympathies”.

He said the killing had “left a trail of devastation behind” for the victim’s family.

“This tragedy and brutal killing of such a young, and loveable man…yes, it’s futile, meaningless, and heartbreaking.”

No words of mine is either going to soften the blow or ease the pain, and unfortunately, there is no short or fast forwarding through bereavement.

The late Patrick O'Connor
The late Patrick O'Connor

Fr McNamara said the local community - including the family of the murder accused - have been left “devastated and numbed” by the killing.

“So many families have been left devastated, shattered, and torn apart as a result of this horrendous crime,” he said.

“It's unfair, its cruel and mind-boggling.”

Fr McNamara also told mourners how a number of killings in the community - including the murder of widowed pensioner Rose Hanrahan last December, have left their mark on him and the wider community.

Ms Hanrahan, (78), was found in her Thomondgate home after a suspected break-in at the property.

Rose Hanrahan.
Rose Hanrahan.

It's understood Ms Hanrahan had been strangled, and gardaí are, seven months on, still searching for the killer, who is believed to have travelled abroad after the killing.

“On occasions like this, I always find it difficult to speak…You know, before Christmas last, we had a similar funeral experience here in the Parish and that was of the late Rose Hanrahan…she (too) was brutally murdered,” Fr McNamara said.

“Then, as now, families, the Parish, in fact - the city, is left in turmoil because of a brutal act of violence on individuals.”

Fr McNamara told mourners: “I have no answers, no reasons, and no explanations.”

He described Mr O’Connor as “a lovely young man, caring, supportive, and extremely helpful”.

He was a good family man. By no means, am I going to canonise him here today, because he was no saint.

“He was, I suppose like many of his equals today, footloose and fancy-free.”

“As his mother said, he was a loveable rogue.”

More on this topic

Talks ongoing in licence dispute between Limerick FC and FAITalks ongoing in licence dispute between Limerick FC and FAI

Tributes paid on passing of 'brilliant' advocate for carers of dementia sufferers, Rachel McMahonTributes paid on passing of 'brilliant' advocate for carers of dementia sufferers, Rachel McMahon

A 'real true love story': Couple married for more than 53 years die within days of each otherA 'real true love story': Couple married for more than 53 years die within days of each other

Motorcyclist killed in Co Limerick collision named as gardaí appeal for witnessesMotorcyclist killed in Co Limerick collision named as gardaí appeal for witnesses


More in this Section

Remarks made by Pat 'The Cope' Gallagher about SF/FF similarities dismissed by Mary Lou McDonaldRemarks made by Pat 'The Cope' Gallagher about SF/FF similarities dismissed by Mary Lou McDonald

Cameron Blair's 'boyish smile and joy of life' recalled by friends in moving tributesCameron Blair's 'boyish smile and joy of life' recalled by friends in moving tributes

People Before Profit offer ‘radical alternative’ to Fianna Fáil and Fine GaelPeople Before Profit offer ‘radical alternative’ to Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael

Paddy Holohan suspended from Sinn Féin following sexual extortion commentsPaddy Holohan suspended from Sinn Féin following sexual extortion comments


Lifestyle

Bryan Stevenson is the American civil rights lawyer who provided the inspiration for the newly-released film Just Mercy. Esther McCarthy spoke to him in IrelandReal-life lawyer Bryan Stevenson on inspiring Just Mercy

So I’ve booked my holidays. And before you ask, yes, I’m basing it around food and wine. I’ll report back in July, but I thought readers might be interested in my plan should you be thinking about a similar holiday.Wines to pick up on a trip to France

Esther N McCarthy is on a roll for the new year with sustainable solutions, cool citruses and vintage vibes.Wish List: Sustainable solutions, cool citruses and vintage vibes

They have absolutely nothing really to do with Jerusalem or indeed with any type of artichoke, so what exactly are these curious little tubers?Currabinny Cooks: Exploring the versatility of Jerusalem artichokes

More From The Irish Examiner