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'We are heartbroken' - distraught dad's loving tribute to 3 children

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Andrew McGinley with his children Conor (9), Darragh (7) and Carla (3)

Andrew McGinley with his children Conor (9), Darragh (7) and Carla (3)

Andrew McGinley with his children Conor (9), Darragh (7) and Carla (3)

Devastated father Andrew McGinley has vowed to keep his promises to his children.

Conor (9), Darragh (7) and Carla (3) were found in their home in Parsons Court in Newcastle, Co Dublin, by their father last Friday after he came home from work to find the emergency services arriving at the scene.

The two brothers and their little sister were remembered at their funerals as creative, funny and unique children whose loss was truly heartbreaking for the family and everyone who knew them.

In an emotional eulogy, Mr McGinley painted the picture of the children's simple and warm innocence, of their play time, their imaginations, their joys and their dreams.

"We often misuse words. When Ireland would lose a match I used to say that I was heartbroken.

Superheroes

"I now know what that really means. We as a family are heartbroken.

"It will only be with your help, support and friendship that we will be able to patch our hearts together in some way, but we will still be forever heartbroken," he said.

Mr McGinley had a lot of people to thank, including film stars and writers, singers and musicians, and the inventors of Lego.

Speaking about Marvel super-heroes, he thanked them for Ironman, Thor, Captain America, and Hulk.

"Thank you, Robert Downey Jnr, and thank you, Chris Hemsworth, for bringing Ironman and Thor to life.

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The hearse carrying their three coffins. Photo: Colin Keegan

The hearse carrying their three coffins. Photo: Colin Keegan

Colin Keegan

"My kids absolutely worshipped you both," he said.

"To Mark Ruffalo, Carla loved your big friendly Hulk in Avengers Endgame," he added, giving special mention to princesses Ana and Elsa, and snowman Olaf from the movie Frozen.

Mr McGinley also thanked Happy Feet creche where Carla was loved, and the local Scoil Chronain and Rathcoole Boys Football Club where Conor and Darragh were so popular.

Neighbours Gavin and Audrey got a special mention from Andrew.

"Gavin, you were beside me when I opened the door and entered the house and I'm sorry for that, but I was so thankful you were there beside me," he told the congregation.

Andrew also said he would keep promises to his children.

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Andrew McGinley touches the coffin of one of his children as they are brought to the Church of The Holy Family in Rathcoole

Andrew McGinley touches the coffin of one of his children as they are brought to the Church of The Holy Family in Rathcoole

For Conor, he will set up a YouTube channel that the nine-year-old had spoken about at Christmas.

For Darragh, he said he will coach the Rathcoole Boys football team. "And I promised Carla a snowman. The place will be filled with snowmen every time it snows," he promised.

The Church of The Holy Family in Rathcoole was full to capacity as Mr McGinley and the McGinley and Morley families brought the children's white coffins to the altar.

In his homily, Fr Kevin Doherty, co-parish priest, said "with all our hearts, and from the deepest place of our soul, we know that this was not the time for our dear children," for Conor, and Darragh and Carla.

Darkness

"It was not their time. They had all their days before them, the adventure of life, and of love," he told the mourners.

"And their very going from us has left a chasm of absence in our lives.

"It is like a pall of darkness," he added.

"And so, the absence of these three beautiful children cries out to us.

"It cries out into the sheer darkness of bewilderment and loss that surrounds us.

"And, as it cries out, it brings with it, into our lives, the deepest of pain, and heart-wrenching grief," said Fr Doherty.

Then, addressing grieving Andrew directly, he said: "And yet, all this is as nothing compared to what has come to you, Andrew.

"We cannot say to you we have words - you know we have none," he said.

"There is only this: from the deepest place of our hearts, Andrew, and from the deepest love that we know, we say to you we are sorry … we are sorry".

The children's mother, Andrew's wife Deirdre Morley, was charged with their murders on Wednesday.

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