Belfast Telegraph

Belfast church where Nora was baptised to hold tragic teen's funeral

Nora Quoirin
Nora Quoirin
Nora Quoirin's mother Meabh and father Sebastien during the search in Malaysia
Mark Edwards

By Mark Edwards

The funeral of teenager Nora Quoirin, who died in the Malaysian jungle while on a family holiday, will take place next week in the same Belfast church where she was baptised.

Requiem Mass will be held on Tuesday in St Brigid's Church at Derryvolgie Avenue in south Belfast, her family announced yesterday.

The principal celebrant will be Fr Edward O'Donnell, the parish priest. He will be joined by Fr Pat Agnew, who is Nora's granduncle.

The body of Nora (15) was discovered last month about a mile and a half from the jungle resort of Dusun, where she had been on holiday with her parents - her mother is from Belfast - and two siblings.

During the search operation, parishioners had gathered at St Brigid's for a 'Mass for Nora'. At the time Fr O'Donnell described Nora as "a child of our faith community".

Nora - who was born with the brain defect holoprosencephaly and was described by her family as "vulnerable" - disappeared on August 4.

Her naked body was discovered near a waterfall less than two miles from the resort 10 days later.

The teenager's family believe she was abducted, insisting that she would not have wandered off by herself.

However, police in Malaysia said they have so far found no evidence of abduction or kidnapping.

A post-mortem examination revealed Nora died from internal bleeding probably caused by hunger and stress.

Nora - who had severe learning difficulties - lived in London and was the daughter of French-Irish parents Sebastien and Meabh Quoirin.

Mrs Quoirin is originally from Belfast.

Negeri Sembilan state police chief Mohamad Mat Yusop said the post-mortem examination of Nora's body had found no evidence that the teenager had been abducted or sexually assaulted.

He said she had died between two and four days previously, from intestinal bleeding, most likely due to starvation and stress.

He added: "The cause of death was upper gastrointestinal bleeding due to duodenal ulcer, complicated with perforation ... it could be due to a lack of food for a long period of time and due to prolonged stress."

He said there were some bruises on her legs but these would not have caused her death.

In a statement issued after the discovery of Nora's body, her family said: "We would like to thank all the people that have been searching for Nora and trying their best to find her.

"We thank the local people and those far and wide for their prayers and support at this time.

"Nora has brought people together, especially from France, Ireland, Britain and Malaysia, united in their love and support for her and her family. She has truly touched the whole world."

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