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Last Updated: Thursday, 24 April, 2003, 14:51 GMT 15:51 UK
Funeral service for Irish Guard
A bearer party from the Irish Guards carried the coffin
A bearer party from the Irish Guards carried the coffin
The funeral has taken place of an Irish Guard from Dublin who died in combat in Iraq.

Lance Corporal Ian Malone was one of seven dead British servicemen returned to a military base in the UK last week.

He and another Irish Guard were killed during fighting in the southern Iraqi city of Basra on 6 April.

The 28-year-old soldier's remains were taken to the Church of the Assumption on the Ballyfermot Road on Thursday morning.

Two pipers, one from the Irish Defence Forces, the other from the British Army's Irish Guards played as Ian Malone's family and friends arrived for the funeral.

Representatives from the British and American embassies and members of the Irish Army also attended the funeral.

A bearer party from the 1st Battalion Irish Guards carried the coffin from the church in military uniform, accompanied by pipers.

The coffin was not draped with a national or regimental flag. The family had requested a private funeral.

'High regard'

In his homily, Father David Lumsden described Ian Malone as "a man of faith, a bit of a philosopher and a manly man".

He said the Malone family could take some comfort from seeing the high regard in which they and Ian were held.

Fr Lumsden also said that Lance Corporal Malone was intensely happy in the British army.

Lance Corporal Malone joined the Irish Guards in 1997
Lance Corporal Malone joined the Irish Guards in 1997
The priest described how he had been turned down from the Irish army on age grounds, and how he had considered joining either the British armed forces or the French Foreign Legion.

But the life of the British army, Fr Lumsden said, appealed to him, because of the foreign travel and the proximity to his family in Dublin.

Members of the British and Irish defence forces led Ian Malone's body as it was taken for burial in west Dublin.

There was no firing party, band or flags.

His girlfriend travelled from Germany to attend, and she, along with his parents, brothers and sisters, joined the funeral procession.

Lance Corporal Malone's family expressed their thanks for the many messages of condolence and support they had received.

The other Irish Guard who died in southern Iraq was Piper Christopher Muzvuru, 20, from Gweru, Zimbabwe.

Both soldiers were killed by sniper fire while on operations in the southern Iraqi city.

Lance Corporal Malone joined the Irish Guards in 1997 and served in the United Kingdom, Poland, Oman, Canada, Kosovo and Germany.

He was also a member of the regimental pipe band.




WATCH AND LISTEN
BBC NI's Shane Harrison reports from Dublin:
"Two pipers, one from the Irish Defence Forces, the other from the Irish Guards played as mourners arrived at the church"



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