Belfast Telegraph

Sunday Life

He truly left his mark: Funeral celebrates life of schoolboy 'Seanboy' Hamilton

Mum Brenda and Dad Sean as the funeral of their son Sean 'Seanboy' Hamilton makes its way to St Patrick's church Belfast. Doves and balloons where released at the family home. Pic Colm O'Reilly 13-07-2019
Mum Brenda and Dad Sean as the funeral of their son Sean 'Seanboy' Hamilton makes its way to St Patrick's church Belfast. Doves and balloons where released at the family home. Pic Colm O'Reilly 13-07-2019
Mum Brenda and Dad Sean at the funeral of their son Sean 'Seanboy' Hamilton. Pic Colm O'Reilly 13-07-2019
Mum Brenda and Dad Sean at the funeral of their son Sean 'Seanboy' Hamilton. Pic Colm O'Reilly 13-07-2019
Mum Brenda and Dad Sean at the funeral of their son Sean 'Seanboy' Hamilton. Pic Colm O'Reilly 13-07-2019
Funeral of Sean 'Seanboy' Hamilton makes its way to St Patrick's church Belfast. Pic Colm O'Reilly 13-07-2019
Funeral of Sean 'Seanboy' Hamilton. Pic Colm O'Reilly 13-07-2019

By Christopher Woodhouse

Tragic schoolboy Sean “Seanboy” Hamilton “truly left his mark” on those who knew him, his funeral was told.

The service for the 12-year-old took place in Belfast on Saturday following his death last Sunday at a Dublin hospital.

Seanboy suffered a fatal heart attack at Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital where had undergone an operation.

Around 200 mourners, many wearing the green and white of his beloved St Patrick’s Football Club, gathered for his requiem mass at St Patrick’s Church in north Belfast.

Prior to the service, doves bearing a green mark were released in front of tearful relatives from outside his family home, just yards from St Patrick’s.

As his coffin draped in the club’s flag was taken from the home, See You Again by American hip hop artist Wiz Khalifa was played.

Father Eugene O’Neill told the congregation: “I can only imagine for any parent, this must be their nightmare, to bury your child, not matter what age your child is, they will always be your child.

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“When I spoke with the family yesterday evening, it was lovely to hear the type of person Seanboy was.

“Described to me as the ‘Quiet Man’, who grew up in Newington, until just a few years ago the family had sense and settled in St Patrick’s Parish,” he joked.

Fr O’Neill said his teachers at St Gerard’s School in west Belfast spoke of him as an “all round good kid”.

“He was described to me as a generous and unique son, there was only one Seanboy, as a brother I was told he was affectionately known as “our kid” and who was the whole of his grandmother’s life,” said Fr O’Neill.

The priest spoke of how Seanboy loved football and it was “truly part of who he was” and joined his grandfather’s old club, St Patrick’s FC.

“It’s obvious that Seanboy, like his grandfather, has left a mark on St Patrick’s Football Club,” said Fr O’Neill.

Seanboy joined the club at the age of four and was also a devoted Manchester United fan, with many mourners donning the club’s shirt or wearing red in tribute.

“Christmas at the Hamilton household was all about Seanboy, whatever he wanted he got.”

Fr O’Neill joked that one year his sister got him a football season ticket which was wrapped so much you “could have played pass the parcel round the church with it and it would still have wrapping paper on it”.

“There are many other great and wonderful memories and stories we could share about who he is but to share even half of them with you we would be here for quite some time,” he said.

“Do keep him in your hearts and in your minds, do keep telling stories of Seanboy over and over again, especially in these weeks and months and years ahead.

“Doing so will allow Seanboy to live on in your hearts, we loved him in life, let’s not forget him in death.

“It is clear to see from the many people gathered here today and those who have visited the house in the last few days and the very many mass cards and other tributes, that Seanboy did indeed have a good life.

“He has well and truly left his mark, a mark of memories and stories that will keep his spirit alive in all of us until we meet together in the fullness of time.”

Following cremation at Roselawn, a special event to celebrate his life was held at Girdwood Community Hub not far from his home.

Belfast Telegraph Digital

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