Belfast Telegraph

Mourners wear bright colours for funeral of tragic Siobhan McCann

By Staff Reporter

Hundreds of mourners, many of them wearing brightly coloured GAA jerseys, packed St Mary of the Angels church in Castlewellan yesterday for the funeral of young cancer victim Siobhan McCann.

The popular GAA footballer (26) had told friends before she died that she did not want a dark, black and white funeral, and had asked that bright colours be worn, including club jerseys - and yesterday they did her proud.

Siobhan, from the village of Clanvaraghan, died peacefully at her home on Monday evening, surrounded by her family.

Ms McCann, a keen GAA player, was diagnosed with colorectal cancer while working as a physiotherapist in London in April last year.

She moved back to Co Down to be with her family while undergoing treatment.

A massive fundraising campaign called Help Beat Siobhan's Toughest Opponent raised more than £100,000 to fund treatment for her disease that was not available through the NHS.

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Siobhan McCann

Tragically, three months later, she was told that the cancer had spread to her liver and that surgery was no longer an option.

Siobhan played Gaelic football for St John's GAC, Drumnaquoile, and Loughinisland GAC.

Members of her London GAA club - as well as members of her local club in the Down village - were among the mourners wearing bright jerseys who shouldered her coffin at the funeral service yesterday.

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Mourners carry the coffin of Siobhan McCann in Clanvaraghan, Co Down, yesterday

In a tribute to Siobhan, St John's GAC posted: "As a club, we acknowledge that we have lost a special member, an incredible player and a unique and loved friend.

"As a club, we pulled together with others in our Gaelic family in an outpouring of love and hope to help her fight her illness. As a club, we will come together again to grieve and share our precious, happy memories of times with Siobhan.

"Those memories will live long in the fabric of St John's, as will the memory of our beloved Siobhan."

Her London club Dulwich Harps said: "Siobhan left a lasting impression on us with her time here in London. We are honoured to call her a club-mate, team-mate and a close friend."

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