Dunnes buried hundreds of miles apart

Mourners sobbed today as they sang You'll Never Walk Alone for the father of the tragic Dunne family, who are to be buried hundreds of miles apart.

Around 100 people turned out to say their final farewell to Adrian (aged 29) as he was laid to rest in Boolavogue, Co Wexford, shortly before the funeral of his wife Ciara (aged 24) and their two infant daughters at the other end of the country.

Granting one of his last wishes - in instructions to an undertaker days before the young family were found dead in their home in suspicious circumstances - the anthem of Liverpool Football Club was played.

A black Liverpool flag and yellow away jersey was draped over his solitary coffin as his brothers lifted it waist high from the hearse into St Cormac's Church in the small rural village of Boolavogue.

At the hallway mourners paused and sang along to a recording of You'll Never Walk Alone as had been requested by Mr Dunne when he unexpectedly visited an undertakers more than a week ago and gave very specific instructions for his family's funeral arrangements.

Among those who turned out to pay their respects were Junior Minister John Browne TD, Brendan Howlin TD, who knows the family and Paul Keogh TD.

Despite the gardaí being warned, health workers notified and priests alerted about concerns for the family they were found dead in their home in Monagear on Monday afternoon.

It is believed Leanne, five, and Shania, three, were suffocated, the mother was found with marks on her neck and Mr Dunne was found hanging in the hallway.

Gardaí said post-mortem examination results would not be released until the results of toxicology tests are completed.

As Led Zeppelin's Stairway to Heaven was played at the burial in Boolavogue, more than 200 miles away in Co Donegal the bodies of Mr Dunne's wife and two children were being taken from Ciara's parents' home in Burt to St Aengus's Church.

People came out of their houses and workplaces, including staff from a nearby hotel, to line parts of the main Derry to Letterkenny road as the funeral cortege made its way to the church.

School children from the nearby national school formed a guard of honour for the three coffins as they were carried inside.

The small Donegal church was filled to capacity with hundreds of people spilling out onto the grounds around it to hear the Requiem mass being piped outside on loud speakers.

The extended families of both Adrian and Ciara hammered out a deal on Wednesday evening that prevented a tug-of-love battle over the funeral arrangements.

Days before they were discovered dead the pair had requested the family be buried together in Boolavogue in the event of anything happening to them.

Some details - including a wish that the children be buried in 'Dora the Explorer' jeans, made only for young children - alerted the undertaker, who contacted gardaí.

However, despite the involvement of a number of state agencies and the clergy over last weekend the family were all found dead on Monday.

The government has ordered an independent inquiry after separate investigations by gardaí and the Health Service Executive are completed.

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