Church 'full of pride' at funeral of soldier
Glowing tributes were paid to a "heroic" young soldier as he was laid to rest with full military honours in his native Cork, following his sudden death at his barracks last week.
Defence Forces chaplain, Fr Brian Whelan, told mourners at Private Daniel Donougher's funeral in Mallow, Co Cork, he had "followed his dream" of serving with the Army, and was "willing to put himself in harm's way to defend, protect and serve his country".
He added: "Today this church is full: full of grief but full of pride."
Pte Donougher (23), from Beechgrove, Castlepark, Mallow, was pronounced dead at University Hospital Limerick shortly after he was discovered unconscious in his bunk at Sarsfield Barracks, Limerick, on Thursday.
Earlier in the day he had played a five-a-side soccer match, but afterwards complained of feeling unwell and had retired to bed.
Daniel's stepfather, Philip Donougher, told mourners: "My worst nightmare came true last Thursday."
In a touching letter to Daniel, he added: "You let me into your life when you were seven years old and that's something I will always cherish."
Daniel's devastated only sibling and sister Ninette sang a haunting hymn.
Members of Army No 1 Band led the cortege to St Gobnait's Cemetery where the Last Post was played.