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Last Updated: Saturday, 1 April 2006, 15:24 GMT 16:24 UK
Hundreds say farewell to author
Mourners look on as the coffin of author John McGahern leaves the church
Mourners look on as the coffin of John McGahern leaves the church
Hundreds of people have attended the funeral of Irish author John McGahern who died suddenly on Thursday.

Many literary figures, including Nobel Laureate Seamus Heaney, were among the mourners at St Patrick's Church in Aughawillan, County Leitrim.

At the 71-year-old's own request, the funeral was a simple one with no music and no orations.

His cousin Father Liam Kelly paid tribute to a "great writer and a good man". He was buried beside his mother.

Father Kelly said that McGahern had lived with the reality of death since he was a child.

He told mourners that the writer had loved life and had not feared death.

McGahern first came to prominence in 1965 with his second novel, The Dark, which was banned in the Irish Republic.

Repressed life

After the publication of the book, he was sacked from his job as a teacher. Last year, he published Memoir, an account of his youth in County Leitrim.

His much celebrated work included the Booker-shortlisted Amongst Women, one of his six novels which focused on often repressed life in rural Ireland.

McGahern's other works include That They May Face the Rising Sun, The Barracks and The Leavetaking, as well as a number of short story collections.

He lived with his second wife, Madeline Green, in County Leitrim for the past three decades.

Irish author McGahern dies at 71
30 Mar 06 |  Northern Ireland


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