NO END TO THE TEARS AS SEA FAMILY BURIED; Mum's Grief at Funerals of Three Generations of Fishermen

The Mirror (London, England), April 18, 2002 | Go to article overview

NO END TO THE TEARS AS SEA FAMILY BURIED; Mum's Grief at Funerals of Three Generations of Fishermen


Byline: REBECCA SMITH

THE heartbroken mother of an eight-year-old boy whose body was lost at sea for almost two months broke down in tears yesterday as she carried his coffin.

Kathleen Greene, was overcome with emotion at the funerals of her son, husband and father-in-law, all called Michael Greene.

The three generations of the family died when their prawn boat sank off the Co Down coast on Valentine's Day.

There were emotional scenes as hundreds of mourners from all over the country gathered for the services at Massforth Chapel, Kilkeel, Co Down and St Joseph's Church in nearby Ballymartin.

With the churches packed, many mourners stood outside huddling together against the driving rain and bitter wind, listening to the priest through loud speakers.

Music filled the churches, but nothing could drown out the sobs as little Michael's white coffin was carried in by his mother and her three sisters.

It was the final farewell for the three Michaels whose deaths had left their community in tatters.

After weeks of searching, the bodies of Michael Greene, 54, his 32-year-old son and grandson were found. Their boat, the Tullaghmurry Lass, was located seven miles off the coast in 140 feet of water.

Parish priest Father Michael Murray officiated at the two funeral services amid scenes of terrible grief.

He said the loss had moved Catholics and Protestants alike.

He added: "The shock of this tragedy has stunned not only our parish but the whole community. After two months we still find it hard to believe it has happened."

Fr Murray paid tribute to young Michael and told the congregation that his untimely death was hard to accept.

He said: "The death of wee Michael has been difficult to take. He was always with a big smile, boisterous, full of life, prepared to help anyone in need.

"If Michael was about you were certainly aware of his presence. He brought life and joy to all. …

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