herald

Tuesday 24 April 2018

Hundreds mourn mum-of-four Racheal, a 'friend for life'

Racheal Battles
Racheal Battles
The coffin of Rachel Battles is laid to rest after her funeral mass in the Church of Saint Joseph and Saint Conal, Bruckless, Co Donegal

One of three women killed in a tragic car smash renewed her wedding vows only last year, her funeral mass heard.

Racheal Battles (37) was described as a "caring" woman who was full of energy and life.

The mother-of-four died in the accident in Ardee, Co Louth, on Friday morning.

She was returning home after a holiday in Turkey.

Travelling with her were Margaret McGonagle (69) and her daughter, Mairead Mundy (38). They also died in the crash.

Yesterday, the parish of Bruckless, south Donegal, mourned the loss of a woman who was known by everyone in the community.

Flowers adorned her coffin as it was taken to the Church of St Joseph and St Conal.

Hundreds of people from the Bruckless parish and wider Donegal community came to pay their respects.

In his homily, Fr James Sweeney described Racheal as someone who was "full of life and energy".

"From the first time you met Racheal, you knew you had a friend for life," he said. "When Racheal was younger, she worked as a barmaid in Killybegs. Little did she know that while in that job she would meet the love of her life, Martin.

"They set up home in Killybegs where they raised four beautiful children. As you know, Racheal's life was all about Martin and the children," said Fr Sweeney.

Caring

"Racheal enjoyed her comforts: sleep, pyjamas and, most importantly, her snugglers.

"Rachael's caring nature led her into the caring profession where she began looking after those in need in the local community."

The couple moved from Killybegs to Bruckless three years ago.

"Last year Racheal and Martin renewed their wedding vows in a quiet family gathering in Saint Mary's Church, Killybegs, after many years of married life together," said Fr Sweeney.

The chief mourners included her husband, her four children her three siblings and her mother, Helena.

After the funeral mass, her remains were carried into the graveyard where she was buried next to the other two victims of the car crash.

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