October 17, 2018, 10:46

Latest: ‘Liam wanted to survive for his family,’ says his father

Latest: ‘Liam wanted to survive for his family,’ says his father

The funeral of former Republic of Ireland international Liam Miller is taking place.

Mourners heard how Liam’s father Billy called him “my little Stanley Matthews”.

Mr Sheedy said Liam Miller was entranced, besotted and utterly in love with his wife Claire.

Miller is survived by his wife Clare and his three children Kory, Leo and Belle.

Shaun Maloney (left), John Delaney and Aiden McGeady (centre, left) and Martin O’Neill (centre) at the funeral of Liam Miller today.

Mr Sheedy said his bravery was never more apparent than when he was diagnosed with oesophageal cancer.

“Liam attacked his condition with a ferocity and a determination to survive it that is impossible to comprehend unless you saw it,” he said.

“Liam was different. His motivation to survive wasn’t for him. Liam’s motivation, as it has always been, was for others and specifically for his family. Liam wanted to survive for his family. They are all that mattered to him.”

Fr Liam Hickey said: “Liam fought his illnesses with the same resilience he played but it was not to be.”

Jerseys from Liam’s time at Manchester United, Celtic, and Ireland were then brought to the altar.

At the opening of the mass Fr Hickey offered prayers for the footballer’s family.

“Liam who died so young on Friday night last after he had completed his life to the full,” Fr Hickey said.

The priest also welcomed the large number of dignitaries and sports figures who attended the service.

“Liam used his talents to the full and in so short a time,” the priest said.

“And through that (Liam) gave so much joy to people and also glory to God who gave him those talents and pride to his family.”

Mourners heard a roll call of some of the sport’s greats who Miller played for including Sir Alex Ferguson, Kenny Dalglish and Giovanni Trapattoni.

“As one might say, follow that,” Fr Hickey said.

The funeral mass was held in St John the Baptist Church in Ovens, Co Cork where Miller was baptised and confirmed and across the road from where he went to school.

Fr Hickey described him as a loving husband and father to three children.

Roy Keane (centre) and Martin O’Neill (right) arrive for the funeral of former Celtic and Manchester United footballer Liam Miller today.

Earlier:Former teammates of the late Liam Miller have descended on The Church of St John the Baptist in Ovens this morning for the funeral.

The requiem mass is taking place at the Church of St John the Baptist in Ovens, Co Cork. It will be followed by burial in the adjoining cemetery.

Martin O’Neill, Roy Keane, Denis Irwin, John O’Shea, Brian Kerr and several members of the Cork City squad are in attendance, as are representatives for the Taoiseach and President Michael D Higgins.

Former Republic player and manager Steve Staunton also attended the funeral, along with Miller’s former Republic team-mates Kevin Doyle and Aiden McGeady.

The former Manchester United, Celtic, and Cork City midfielder passed away on Friday following a battle with pancreatic cancer.

Miller grew up in Ovens, Co. Cork, and City manager John Caulfield yesterday urged the people of Cork to “turn out in force” for the funeral.

Roy Keane and Neil Lennon at the removal of Liam Miller in Ballincollig last night. Pic: Michael Mac Sweeney/Provision

Caulfield said: “It’s important that we show our support for the family and give Liam the tribute he deserves.

“Nothing will ease it for his family, but it’s important that the club and the people of Cork come out in force and show that respect.”

Among the mourners are Ireland managers Roy Keane and Martin O’Neill and former Manchester United and Ireland teammates John O’Shea and Denis Irwin.

– Digital Desk

Sourse: breakingnews.ie

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