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Donegal crash victim ‘wanted to be famous’

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Mourners at the funeral of Paul Doherty follow his coffin to St Mary's Church in Clonmany, Co Donegal.

Mourners at the funeral of Paul Doherty follow his coffin to St Mary's Church in Clonmany, Co Donegal.

Niall Carson

Mourners attend the funeral of PJ McLaughlin at St Mary's Church in Fahan, Co Donegal

Mourners attend the funeral of PJ McLaughlin at St Mary's Church in Fahan, Co Donegal

Mourners attend the funeral of PJ McLaughlin at St Mary's Church in Fahan, Co Donegal

Mourners attend the funeral of PJ McLaughlin at St Mary's Church in Fahan, Co Donegal

Mourners attend the funeral of PJ McLaughlin at St Mary's Church in Fahan, Co Donegal

Mourners attend the funeral of PJ McLaughlin at St Mary's Church in Fahan, Co Donegal

Mourners attend the funeral of PJ McLaughlin at St Mary's Church in Fahan, Co Donegal

Mourners attend the funeral of PJ McLaughlin at St Mary's Church in Fahan, Co Donegal

Mourners attend the funeral of PJ McLaughlin at St Mary's Church in Fahan, Co Donegal

Mourners attend the funeral of PJ McLaughlin at St Mary's Church in Fahan, Co Donegal

Mourners attend the funeral of PJ McLaughlin at St Mary's Church in Fahan, Co Donegal

Mourners attend the funeral of PJ McLaughlin at St Mary's Church in Fahan, Co Donegal

Mourners attend the funeral of PJ McLaughlin at St Mary's Church in Fahan, Co Donegal

Mourners attend the funeral of PJ McLaughlin at St Mary's Church in Fahan, Co Donegal

Mourners attend the funeral of PJ McLaughlin at St Mary's Church in Fahan, Co Donegal

Mourners attend the funeral of PJ McLaughlin at St Mary's Church in Fahan, Co Donegal

Mourners attend the funeral of PJ McLaughlin at St Mary's Church in Fahan, Co Donegal

Mourners attend the funeral of PJ McLaughlin at St Mary's Church in Fahan, Co Donegal

PJ McLaughlin, one of the eight men killed in the Buncrana car crash

PJ McLaughlin, one of the eight men killed in the Buncrana car crash

Eamonn McDaid, one of the eight men killed in the Buncrana car crash

Eamonn McDaid, one of the eight men killed in the Buncrana car crash

Ciaran Sweeney, one of the eight men killed in the Buncrana car crash

Ciaran Sweeney, one of the eight men killed in the Buncrana car crash

Damien McLaughlin, one of the eight men killed in the Buncrana car crash

Damien McLaughlin, one of the eight men killed in the Buncrana car crash

Paul Doherty, one of the eight me killed in the Buncrana car crash

Paul Doherty, one of the eight me killed in the Buncrana car crash

James McEleaney, one of the eight men killed in the Buncrana car crash

James McEleaney, one of the eight men killed in the Buncrana car crash

Mark McLaughlin, one of the eight men killed in the Buncrana car crash

Mark McLaughlin, one of the eight men killed in the Buncrana car crash

Mourners at the funeral of Paul Doherty follow his coffin to St Mary's Church in Clonmany, Co Donegal.

Crash victim PJ McLaughlin wanted to be famous for something in his life, hundreds of mourners were told at his funeral Mass.

Tragically, he had become famous, with his face appearing on the front page of probably every newspaper in the country, Fr Neil McGoldrick told a packed congregation at St Mura's church. But famous for the wrong reason, he added.

For a second time yesterday the winding road up the hill to Fahan parish church was jammed with cars as more than 1,000 gathered to mourn the loss of the popular 21-year-old.

Amid scenes of terrible grief, his father Charlie and brother Charles helped carry the coffin into a packed chapel, while his mother Kathleen, sisters Deborah and Aoife, and brother Oran linked to each other for support as they walked through a guard of honour provided by Illies Celtic Football Club.

Hundreds stood in silence outside the church for the service for the third of the eight collision victims, who, according to the priest, had enjoyed life to the full.

Messages of condolence from the Bishop of Derry, Dr Seamus Hegarty, Bishop Lagan and President Mary McAleese were conveyed to the family.

Belfast Telegraph