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Funeral of Derry nun Sister Clare Crockett killed in Ecuador earthquake to take place on Monday

By Laura Abernethy

Sister Clare Crockett will be laid to rest in her native Londonderry next Monday.

Long Tower church confirmed on Wednesday that her funeral Mass will be celebrated by Bishop of Derry Donal McKeown on Monday at noon.

The 33-year-old nun was one of six people killed when a school collapsed during the disaster in Playa Prieta on April 16.

The South American country was hit by an earthquake measuring 7.8 on the Richter scale, bringing down buildings and damaging infrastructure, killing more than 650 people and injuring 16,000.

Sister Clare, who was from the Long Tower area of Derry, had been working at the school with the Home of the Mother order of nuns.

She was trying to lead six young Ecuadorian postulants to safety when a stairwell collapsed in the building.

Her family have faced a long wait to bring her home due to the massive devastation caused by the disaster.

Her body is due to be flown home from Ecuador in the next few days and is expected to arrive at her Iona Terrace home on Friday.

There will be a wake at her home over the weekend as her family and her community prepare to say goodbye.

As they wait to lay her to rest, her family and community have been fundraising to help cover the costs.

In a recent statement, the family said: "We will continue to fundraise, working with the Kevin Bell Trust who will provide the necessary assistance and should our fundraising yield more than is necessary to bring our beloved Clare home, the monies raised will be used by the trust to assist anyone else who may find themselves in a similar situation."

A fundraising page has been set up by local woman Sinead Johnson and has already raised almost £6,000.

She explained: "Unfortunately, at this sad time the family is faced with the ordeal of having to pay to get Clare's body home to where she belongs.

"Clare would have done anything to help anyone and we would be forever grateful if you could help Clare's family at this difficult time by making a donation to help with the costs."

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