herald

Friday 15 December 2017

Tom recalled as good husband who idolised his grandchildren

Thomas Kennedy - who vanished last year from his Dublin home before his body was found in Britain - was described as a "good husband" who "idolised his grandchildren" at his funeral this morning.

Mourners gathered at the Church of the Annunciation, Finglas to remember the much-loved 81-year-old.

"It really is a mystery as to what truly happened," Fr Joe Donnelly told the congregation.

"It is something that we will never know and we will never know the answer until we stand before God with Tom," he said.

Thomas was last seen putting out the bins at his home in Virginia Park on July 29, last year at around 9pm and had not been seen since.

His family organised a poster campaign and several large searches in Dublin but did not learn his fate until last week.

Thomas's body washed up at Blackpool a month after he vanished but he was not identified until DNA tests were carried out this month.

Prayer

"The day Tom went missing everybody, all over the city, prayed. I remember one night going into my chipper in Donabate and seeing the notice of Tom's disappearance - it was all over Dublin and everybody was with the family in prayer," Fr Donnelly said.

"I believe that the mystery and the wonder and the questions are all irrelevant - they don't matter. What matters to me I believe is that Jesus walked by Tom's side all through his life," Fr Donnelly added.

He offered his condolences to Thomas's wife Patricia, known to family and friends as Fran, their three sons Paul, Bernard and Vincent and nine grandchildren.

"He was the good husband. He idolised his grandchildren. He was totally family-oriented and that blossomed forth into his community."

He made special mention of Thomas's relationship with Fran.

"Not only was he to be married for 47 years to Fran but when they met that was the unique moment in which Tom discovered a total and complete and unconditional love.

"It was a graced moment for both of them. They had discovered the one they loved, the one that they were prepared to live with until the end of their lives," he said.

Thomas who had been a commissioner with the scouts and had worked for CIE, also visited Lourdes many times with his parish, mourners were told.

hnews@herald.ie

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