The Irish president Michael Higgins led tributes to Dolores O’Riordan at the singer’s removal service last night.
Hundreds turned out at Cross’s Funeral Home, Ballyneety, near the star’s Ballybricken home, to pay their respects to Limerick’s rock queen.
Mourners, including stars from the music industry, are expected at the singer’s funeral mass in St Ailbe’s Church, Balybricken, today.
The three remaining members of The Cranberries band – Mike and Noel Hogan and Fergal Lawlor – joined O’Riordan’s mother Eileen along with her five brothers and sister at the funeral home.
Hundreds turned out at Cross’s Funeral Home, Ballyneety, near the star’s Ballybricken home, to pay their respects to Limerick’s rock queen
The much-loved singer was laid out in an open coffin with rosary beads around her hands, next to photographs of her meeting the late Pope John Paul II and of her performing with her bandmates
The coffin of The Cranberries singer Dolores O’Riordan is taken into Saint Ailbe’s Church, Ballybricken, ahead of her funeral on Tuesday
The singer was renowned for her distinctive voice and the band enjoyed huge success in the 1990s with tracks including Zombie and Linger
The singer’s partner, Ole Koretsky, who also played with O’Riordan in the alt-rock band D.A.R.K., was also present.
The much-loved singer was laid out in an open coffin with rosary beads around her hands, next to photographs of her meeting the late Pope John Paul II and of her performing with her bandmates.
After signing one of four books of condolences outside the village funeral home, President Higgins spent 15 minutes inside privately talking to O’Riordan’s loved ones.
Afterwards, paying tribute to the adored songbird, he said: ‘I think it’s very important to pay tribute to the contribution Delores made, and I also wanted to meet her mother Eileen and her fabulous huge family of nephews and nieces who were very important to her.’
‘It’s so profoundly sad that someone so young is taken from us, but it’s equally important also to pay tribute to (her) work and music. It is also to the incredible credit of all those who have appreciated the music and the songs and the performances and the band, that they have come out in such numbers to make their tribute. It’s so appropriate and it is generous, and I hope that her family will get all the support hey need.’
‘Limerick is very very proud of (her). As her teachers have been saying, she was a star that shun bright from the very beginning, and I wish her peace. Our sympathies go out to her mother Eileen and her family.’
Also paying tribute, O’Riordan’s former housekeeper and nanny to her children, Kay Duffy, said: ‘I was Dolores’ housekeeper for many a year, when she was living in Kilmallock, and she couldn’t have treated me better than what she did. They are a lovely family.’
Floral tributes in the hearse as the the coffin of The Cranberries singer Dolores O’Riordan is taken into Saint Ailbe’s Church, Ballybricken
The three remaining members of The Cranberries band – Mike and Noel Hogan and Fergal Lawlor – joined O’Riordan’s mother Eileen along with her five brothers and sister at the funeral home
Duffy, from Bulgaden, Co Limerick, added: ‘It’s very sad. I am so shocked, I can’t believe it. Whenever she came home she would give me a phone call.’
‘She was a very generous woman. We kept in touch and I’d be there for her. She’d phone me for different things. She used to make me laugh. She was very good to me and my family,’ she added.
Cathy Crawford, who minded O’Riordan’s son, Taylor, in her pre-school in Donoghmore, Co Limerick, recalled how they would both sing the nursery rhyme ‘London Bridge is Falling Down’ to Taylor in the kitchen of her home.
‘I had (Dolores’) oldest son, Taylor, in my preschool 16 years ago. Dolores was lovely and she used to come down to the house and wait in the kitchen while (Taylor) was in the school. She was a lovely lovely person, a very kind person. It’s very sad.’
A floral tribute was laid from popular Irish band The Corrs, with a note saying: ‘With our deepest sympathy from The Corrs’
Last Sunday, thousands mourned the Limerick star during a four-hour public reposing at St Joseph’s Church in the city.
The singer’s funeral mass is to take place in the Church of Saint Ailbe in Ballybricken, Co Limerick, at 11.30am.
Canon Liam McNamara, the associate pastor and a close friend of the O’Riordan family, will act as the chief celebrant of the Requiem Mass.
Father James Walton will be the chief co-celebrant, alongside Archbishop Kieran O’Reilly, Archbishop of Cashel and Emly and Archbishop Dermot Clifford, the Archbishop Emeritus of Cashel and Emly.
The funeral mass will be broadcast live by Limerick’s local radio station. The service will be followed by a private family burial.
The coffin of Cranberries singer Dolores O´Riordan is removed from St Joseph´s Church in Limerick, Ireland, for reposal at Cross´s Funeral Home, Ballyneety Limerick (Niall Carson/PA)
People applaud as the coffin of Cranberries singer Dolores O´Riordan is removed from St Joseph´s Church in Limerick (Niall Carson/PA)
A floral tribute from band mates is placed on the coffin of Cranberries singer Dolores O´Riordan (Niall Carson/PA)
O’Riordan was found dead in a London hotel last Monday.
The 46 year-old – who was also a member of alternative rock group DARK – had been working on a new studio album with The Cranberries in the months before her death and was expected to discuss its scheduled release with record label BMG while in England.
A number of tests have been carried out to establish the cause of the musician’s death, an inquest heard on Friday before it was adjourned until April 3.
Sales and streams of The Cranberries’ back catalogue have rocketed by 1,000 per cent in the days since her death.
Greatest hits collection Stars: The Best Of 1992-2002 landed at number 16 on the albums chart this week, a higher position than its previous peak of number 20 when it was released in 2002.
The singer was renowned for her distinctive voice and the band enjoyed huge success in the 1990s with tracks including Zombie and Linger.
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