herald

Wednesday 16 August 2017

My brother Dave was a most gifted man, funeral told

Family members are consoled as the remains of wheelchair bound David Costigan who died in a suspected arson attack on his home in Bray, Co. Wicklow last week are carried by family members from St. Fergal's Church, Ballywaltrim, Bray Photo: Colin Keegan, Collins Dublin.
Family members are consoled as the remains of wheelchair bound David Costigan who died in a suspected arson attack on his home in Bray, Co. Wicklow last week are carried by family members from St. Fergal's Church, Ballywaltrim, Bray Photo: Colin Keegan, Collins Dublin.

THE younger brother of David Costigan, who died in a suspected arson attack last week, has paid tribute to the deceased - whom he called "the most gifted man I knew".

And Brian Costigan, speaking at the funeral Mass for his beloved brother, said that wheelchair-bound David never let his disability get the better of him.

Mr Costigan (55) was trapped in his house on Oldcourt Avenue in Bray as fire engulfed the terraced building at 4.30am on September 26.

Yesterday hundreds of friends and family mourned his loss at an emotional ceremony at St Fergal's Church in Ballywaltrim, Bray, Co Wicklow.

Brian told gathered mourners that his older brother was a "hugely talented man" and that for him the wheelchair was only means to get from A to B.

Gentleman

"David was a gentleman. He had a huge heart and a huge personality, he adored his children so very much - they were always his main concern," Brian told gathered friends and family.

"He was one of the most talented and gifted men I knew.

"His disability never held him back. Every family member here today can look around their homes and see David's handy work.

"Some things he mended, some things he made and I dare I say it, some things he broke," Brian said, to laughs from the audience.

"It is a great comfort to feel the love in here today for David," Brian added.

"So here we are David our final farewell. I'm sure you'll be as popular and as loved up in heaven as you were down here.

"Goodbye Dave, until we meet again," he concluded, struggling to hold back tears and to loud applause from those in the church. The grieving brother also thanked neighbours and friends for their support.

Some of the mourners wore Bray Fire Service hooded jumpers. There were also members of the gardai present.

Mr Costigan's son Mark, who is in his 20s, was also in the house at the time of the fire and attempted to save his father.

However, he was fighting through smoke and flames and could not reach him.

Mark managed to escape out the back of the terraced property.

Mark said he had received threats in the days before the fire falsely accusing him of a recent incident in Bray and warned that he'd be burnt out of his house.

Fire

Gardai are investigating if there is a possible link between these threats and the fire.

Mr Costigan is mourned by his children: Dave, Robert, Laura, Donna and Mark, along with their mother Patricia.

He is also survived by his mother Rita and father Michael and his brothers Philip and Brian, sisters Christina and Yvonne.

Mr Costigan had five grandchildren, Kayla, Callum, Nicole, Charlie and William.

Following the funeral Mass, his remains were taken for burial to Glasnevin Cemetery.

The hearse was decorated with floral tributes including a large one that read "brother".

hnews@herald.ie

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