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Wednesday 7 December 2016

'I always told him he was perfect' - tributes paid at funeral of Steve Harris

Steve Harris (34) died while trying to save the life of his brother Alan Harris in tragic sewer incident

The coffin being carried into church from the Dubs supporters bus. Funeral of Stephen (Steve) Harris, Divine Mercy Church, Balgaddy, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
The coffin being carried into church from the Dubs supporters bus. Funeral of Stephen (Steve) Harris, Divine Mercy Church, Balgaddy, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
The Harris brothers.
The coffin being carried into church. Funeral of Stephen (Steve) Harris, Divine Mercy Church, Balgaddy, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
The coffin arriving to church in Dubs Supporters van through guard of honour. Funeral of Stephen (Steve) Harris, Divine Mercy Church, Balgaddy, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
General view of Harris' Dubs supporters bus that carried coffin to the church. Funeral of Stephen (Steve) Harris, Divine Mercy Church, Balgaddy, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Harris' Dubs supporters bus that carried coffin to the church (the back door had to be removed to enable coffin to fit through doorway). Funeral of Stephen (Steve) Harris, Divine Mercy Church, Balgaddy, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Harris' Dubs supporters bus that carried coffin to the church. Funeral of Stephen (Steve) Harris, Divine Mercy Church, Balgaddy, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Harris' Dubs supporters bus that carried coffin to the church. Funeral of Stephen (Steve) Harris, Divine Mercy Church, Balgaddy, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn

The bluebird van rolled away for a final time as 'awesome guy' Steve Harris, who tragically lost his life in a sewer accident in Portmarnock, was laid to rest.

Hundreds turned up at Divine Mercy Church, Balgaddy, to bid farewell to massive Dublin football fan, Mr Harris (34), who died trying to save his brother Alan after he fell into a sewer pit after being overcome by fumes.

The pair had been working for their company DrainTech, at Drumnigh Woods, Portmarnock last Wednesday.

The arrival of Mr Harris' remains at the church was greeted by a standing ovation from everyone present, with a guard of honour led by his and partner Yvonne's TRX fitness group.

Leading the tributes for 'budding actor' Steve, the parish priest said he defied all human instincts of survival by attempting to save his brother and that the "word hero is an understatement".

Steve's brother Derek read out a heartbreaking eulogy on behalf of his partner Yvonne, before paying a fitting tribute himself.

"He never left the house without a kiss. We were only eight years together...we only scratched the surface.

"I always told him he was perfect, even though he didn't believe me. I'll spend everyday telling Nathan about the man his dad was, by showing pictures and videos," he said in the words of Yvonne.

Derek then continued the speech in his own words, saying that his brother owed the family nothing, he gave them everything.

"I'm told Fridays were a very special day at the DrainTech offices, Ste christened them 'free hug Friday' where everyone got a free 'Stevie hug'...he charged during the rest of the week," said Derek.

The devastated brother then asked everyone in the church to turn to the person on their right and give them a 'Stevie hug' in memory of the tragic hero, whether they knew them or not.

DrainTech staff along with workers from a number of other drainage and plumbing companies were also in attendance.

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