Belfast Telegraph

Funeral held for young mum Jolene O'Hagan who died while planning her wedding

By Cate McCurry

The funeral of a young mother-of-two from Co Tyrone who had been planning her wedding before she died suddenly has taken place.

Jolene O'Hagan (23) was buried in her Manchester United shirt.

The Cookstown woman was rushed to hospital on Sunday suffering from deep vein thrombosis.

It's understood Ms O'Hagan fell ill on Saturday evening, but after wakening on Sunday morning, her condition worsened.

She was rushed to Craigavon Area Hospital but despite efforts from the emergency services she later died.

The mother was engaged to her teenage sweetheart Johnathan Smyth and they had two young sons, four-year-old Alfie and two-year-old Theo.

The pair had been together for some seven years and had been planning to get married.

Hundreds of mourners packed Derryloran Parish Church in Cookstown yesterday for her funeral.

Reverend Canon Norman Porteus, who led yesterday's service, said he had known Ms O'Hagan since she was four years-old.

"I knew her all through her primary and secondary years at school, she was always a happy person," he said.

"Then in her teenage years she met the love her life, Johnny.

"They had planned to get married and had many hopes together, but the illness on Sunday was a shock to everyone.

"She was taken to Craigavon hospital because she had thrombosis and there were two ambulances at her home and they worked with her for a few hours, but unfortunately she passed away."

He spoke of her keen interest in football and how she had been a fan of Manchester United.

"She was buried in her Manchester United shirt," he added.

"Johnny supported Arsenal, so you could imagine the rivalry.

"She devoted herself to her three boys - Johnny and the two children.

"They had plans to get married, but that never happened, it's very tragic."

A devastated Johnny spoke of how Jolene was the "love of his life" in a poem he had written to her. He described her as "the best wife-to-be and mummy" and said he will treasure their memories.

Rev Porteus continued: "Their sons stayed with friends and did not go to the funeral, but later he will put them to bed without their mummy and that's very tough. Johnny doted on her and said she was the love of his life. It's major trauma for everyone.

"The family are grateful to the cardiac team in Craigavon and everyone who helped. People have been so kind and supportive to them."

Her family has asked for donations to be made to the Thrombosis UK charity.

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