Athlone victim Paul “Babs” Connolly was remembered as a “loyal and caring friend” with a “heart of gold”.


Paul Connolly, who died after suffering serious injuries in an incident in Athlone last weekend, was remembered as someone with a “heart of gold”.

r Connolly, 48, from Edenderry, Co Offaly, died after suffering serious injuries in a suspected attack in Athlone, Co Westmeath on Saturday.

He’d been in town on a bachelor party.

Mr Connolly’s funeral service was held at St Mary’s Church in Edenderry this afternoon.

Mourners heard Mr Connolly was a “terrific character” who loved all things music and film, particularly Bruce Springsteen and Rocky Balboa.

He was one of 12 children and was described as a “big kid at heart”.

A number of icons were brought to the altar to represent Paul’s life, including a family photo, dumbbells and a DVD and CD depicting his love of film and music.

Paul’s niece Shauna said the Connolly family was “shattered” by his tragic death.

“On behalf of the Connolly family, I would like to thank everyone who came out here today to honor the life of Paul Babs Connolly,” she said.

“I know the city of Edenderry and the rest of Ireland are saddened by his sudden death. And at this time of unimaginable sorrow, your kind words of support have been a great comfort to all of us.

“First of all, I would like to say that Babs’ life will not be reduced to unpleasant headlines or media quotes. In the days following Babs’ death, I’ve come to realize that sorrow is just love that has nowhere to go.

“It’s the heaviness in your chest from the weight of such a loss. We have all known Babs in many ways, brother, uncle, cousin and loving friend. But it’s safe to say that however Babs entered your life, he enriched it in his own unique way.

“Babs grew up on Assumption Road with his parents Major and Bridie and his siblings and is predeceased by his little sister Martina.

“When you grow up in a big family like this, you can only imagine what happened in this household with so many personalities and Messers under one roof.

“As an uncle, Babs was a huge influence on all of his nieces and nephews and he was always happy to share his passions with us.

“He introduced us all to his favorite singers and bands like Queen, Guns n Roses and of course Bruce Springsteen, who were always blasting out of his record player.

“Babs was also a loyal and caring friend and he was always there when you needed him. He loved his friends very much and they loved him back. They were brothers to the end.

“I’ve been told so many times this week that Edenderry has lost one of its great characters. We love you Paul, rest in peace.”

An obituary notice posted on states that Mr Connolly “tragically died” on Saturday 13 August.

The message read: “Deeply sorry from his loving family, brothers and sisters, Raymond, Ann, Patricia, Michael, Marie, Brenda, David, Carmel, Joan and Dianne, brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, nieces, nephews, grand-nieces, grand-nephews, relatives and beloved friends.” Athlone victim Paul “Babs” Connolly was remembered as a “loyal and caring friend” with a “heart of gold”.

Fry Electronics Team

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