Eamon's story

My dad, Eamon, was born in 1966. He was a keen footballer, skilled carpenter and, above all, a real family man. He and my mum, Ann, met in 1982 and married 24 years ago. Their three children are Darren, Daniel and me, Amy, and they have four grandchildren.

Dad had such a kind soul. He would go out of his way to help anyone. He was loved by so many people. He was also a true prankster, with an infectious smile and laugh.

Dad had told us that he wanted a traditional horse and carriage for his funeral because he came from a Traveller family. On the day of the funeral, the horse and carriage were so beautiful. They were shiny jet black, and the carriage was filled with floral tributes. The word 'DAD' was secured on the top so that everyone following behind could see it.

The horse and carriage came right into the close where he had lived, so that friends and neighbours could come out and pay their respects. Everyone commented on how fitting it was for my dad and on the kindness of Poppy’s staff.

"I think Dad would have absolutely loved it! I can imagine him now, smiling and telling me how much he loved the horses"

It was more than we could ever have hoped for, for his send off.

The extra touches, such as the capes over the horses, were so important to us. I didn't know they would be wearing them — when my nan had a horse and carriage at her funeral, the horses were bare. Poppy’s catered to our every need — the family walking behind the carriage on my dad’s last journey into the chapel and laying the rose on his coffin were such powerful moments for everyone.

My advice to someone else planning a funeral for a friend or relative would be — don’t be afraid to ask questions and to research the place beforehand. In our family, we are very traditional and we like to bring our loved ones home before the funeral, but Covid stopped that. Poppy’s was the only place that I felt comfortable leaving my dad, because they were such warm and welcoming people.

Eamon's family's choices

  • A modern cremation with a 30 minute service.
  • Numbers in the chapel were restricted, so before the service we brought Eamon to his community in a horse-drawn hearse carriage.
  • Family and friends followed behind on foot from the gate to the chapel.
  • An elm veneer coffin with gold-coloured handles.
  • Amy's parish priest led the service.
  • Eamon was dressed in his favourite jeans, trainers and jumper.
  • Poppy's staff wore traditional morning suits.
  • Eamon’s ashes were delivered as soon as possible after the service as this was important to Amy’s mum.
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