24 May 2022

Mourners celebrate life of 'shining star', Kilkenny's Harry Byrne



A young Kilkenny man - who loved his friends and family, who adored school, sport and his community, and had a fantastic sense of humour - was celebrated on Friday, as Harry Byrne was laid to rest.

The colours of Young Irelands GAA draped his coffin, while classmates wore their St Kieran's and club jerseys. A guard of honour was provided by classmates and friends from the many activities in which he was involved.

Harry was laid to rest in the Church of the Assumption cemetery, with thousands also attending the ceremony online. Mourners heard of his love of school, of sport and of practical jokes. Those attending heard of Harry's impish smile, team and community spirit, and joy in everything he did.

"Harry reminds us that a life is not defined by the length of days. Rather, the fullness of our lives is defined by the quality of those days. Harry reminds of the fullness of the life that he led, the manner in how he lived those days and ultimately the legacy that he leaves," said Fr Dermot Ryan.

Tributes and readings recalled Harry's passion for sport, hanging out with his friends, and spending time with his family. His school, St Kieran's College, also featured prominently.

"We recall in Kieran's, a student, a classmate, a friend who enjoyed life. One who was always smiling and laughing. One who gave his all for every team," said Fr Ryan.

Mourners departed the church to beautiful renditions of Stand By Me and Lean On Me.

Harry Byrne is survived by his heartbroken parents Fergal and Annette, his adoring brothers and sister Jake, Aimee and Sam, his much cherished grandparents Teresa Byrne, Martin and Mary (Nolan), aunts, uncles, grand aunts, grand uncles, cousins, relatives and a wide circle of friends.

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