Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 16 April 2014

Ulster woman's family absent from her funeral

The funeral of an Ulster woman murdered in an English hospital has taken place in Manchester.

Rosalind McManus, who was originally from Kilkeel, was strangled on a mixed-sex ward of the Birch Hill Hospital in Rochdale, Greater Manchester, almost four weeks ago, on August 13. A man has been charged with her murder.

Despite repeated appeals by Manchester police following the 58-year-old's death, no Ulster relatives came forward.

But yesterday, friends gathered at Rochdale Crematorium to pay their respects in what was described as "fitting tribute".

During the 30-minute humanist service organised by The Pennine Care NHS Trust - which covers mental health services at Birch Hill hospital - around a dozen people heard poems, as well as music by Bob Marley, Patsy Cline and Elvis Presley.

Speaking to the Belfast Telegraph after the service, a female mourner, who asked not to be named, said it was a pity Rosalind had been unable to find her family before she died.

"Her carer at the hospital said a few words and a security guard with whom she was friendly was also there," she said.

"It was probably just the way Rosalind would have wanted it."

Rosalind had admitted herself to the Birch Hill Hospital eight weeks before she was killed.

According to her birth certificate, Rosalind was born at what was then Kilkeel Hospital on July 14, 1948.

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