Farewell to Shane

By Eoin Meegan

Photos by Ian Davis

At the end of 2023 the world bade farewell to Shane MacGowan, songsmith extraordinaire and recognised genius. Although born in Kent, Shane saw Ireland as his natural spiritual home. Much of his adult life was spent here, indeed in this very parish, having lived variously in South Lotts, Donnybrook, and Sandymount.  So we can truthfully say he was one of our own sons. Indeed it was while he lived in Belmont Avenue I got to know him, in McCloskey’s pub which we both would frequent, and I always found him a gentle, loving soul, who treated everyone the same. He always had a kind word for everyone and was happy to chat and share his infectious smile and laugh.

On the day of his funeral the cortege set out on a horse-drawn carriage to do an honorary tour of the city from Ringsend, South Lotts, where he and his wife Victoria first lived, before making its way to his beloved Nenagh for the final funeral service. Dublin’s streets were thronged with people coming out to pay their last respects to the singer whose Fairytale of New York has come to epitomize Christmas itself.

NewsFour’s own photographer, Ian, was on hand on the day and captured these moving pictures. Shane, your music, and gentle life will never be forgotten: may you rest in peace.