Irish Republican News · March 21, 2017
[Irish Republican News]

[Irish Republican News]
Crowds gather to honour Martin McGuinness


Thousands of people have attended the removal of Martin McGuinness in advance of his funeral in his native Derry.

Mr McGuinness died during the night at Derry’s Altnagelvin Hospital with his family by his bedside. He was diagnosed with a rare and serious illness in December.

Amid snow and sleet, an unexpectedly large crowd followed the coffin of the former Sinn Fein negotiator and IRA commander as it was carried to his home at Westland Avenue in the Bogside. There was a respectful silence as the procession turned past Free Derry Corner where a tricolour flag flew at half-mast.

Mr McGuinness’s wife Bernie bore his coffin past the Bogside’s landmark before his two sons, Fiachra and Emmett, shouldered his remains into his house.

Gerry Adams and the Sinn Fein leader at Stormont, Michelle O’Neill, draped the flag over his coffin in Derry’s William Street. They also helped to carry the coffin.

An emotional Sinn Fein President said his long-time friend was a passionate republican who worked for reconciliation in Ireland. “We are very, very sad that we lost him overnight,” Mr Adams said.

Tributes have flowed in from across the world for Mr McGuinness. Earlier on Tuesday, the queen of England sent a private message of condolence to his family.

Former US president Bill Clinton said Mr McGuinness’s legacy should be an example for others to live by. “When he decided to fight for peace, Martin was calm, courageous, and direct. And when he gave his word, that was as good as gold,” he said.

Books of condolences have opened or are opening in Derry, Cork, Dublin and Belfast.

His funeral will leave his home on Westland Terrace in the city on Thursday at 1.20pm on Thursday, with Requiem Mass in St Columba’s Church Longtower at 2pm. His remains will be interred in The City Cemetery afterwards.

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