Prayers said for ‘both families’ at funeral of farmer shot dead in Mayo

Brendan Kilduff (67) believed ‘if there isn’t a sing-song it’s a bad night out’, funeral told

Brendan Kilduff, who died after the shooting incident in Co Mayo.

Brendan Kilduff, who died after the shooting incident in Co Mayo.

 

Mayo farmer Brendan Kilduff, who was shot dead near his home last Tuesday night, was described at his funeral Mass as “a man of the land, a man of family, a man of the parish, a generous soul”.

Fr Richard Gibbons, parish priest of Knock, told mourners at Saturday’s funeral for the 67-year-old that, in the light of the tragic death, the community was “troubled, perhaps angry and distraught”.

A man in his 80s, a neighbour of the deceased, was arrested after the shooting at Coogue, Ballyhaunis, minutes before midnight on Tuesday. Gardaí believe he discharged his firearm thinking Mr Kilduff was an intruder.

Fr Gibbons offered thoughts and prayers to “both families who are caught up in this tragedy”.

The priest said Mr Kilduff was a decent, obliging, individual who loved helping others.

Fondly describing him as a person who “could be out at all hours of the day or night”, Fr Gibbons continued, to chuckles from the crowded Church of St John the Baptist, “it’s no secret that ‘Brendan time’ was not exactly Greenwich mean time and his watch was adapted to a time zone that was completely different”.

Brendan Kilduff’s funeral at the Church of St John the Baptist, Knock, Co Mayo. Photograph: Ellen O’Riordan
Brendan Kilduff’s funeral at the Church of St John the Baptist, Knock, Co Mayo. Photograph: Ellen O’Riordan

As a part-time farmer, Mr Kilduff “stood in solidarity” with other farmers asking for justice in their sector, the church heard. He had intended to go to this week’s National Ploughing Championships in Co Carlow.

Adrian Gildea, a nephew of the deceased, made a special mention of Mr Kilduff’s niece, Geraldine Walsh, who was on honeymoon in Tokyo when news of the tragedy broke.

“She is unable to join us today,” Mr Gildea continued but in a message home she said “It feels so strange that even here in Tokyo everyone knows Brendan”.

“He would be thrilled to know of his global appeal.”

Mr Gildea described his uncle as a man who was caring, strong, humorous, a man of faith, a singer, storyteller, musician, comedian, perfectionist and friend.

Unfortunately, he continued, a new life for Mr Kilduff in London as a young man was cut short when he had to return home to look after his parents and run the family farm.

Mr Kilduff loved nothing better than to sing at social occasions, his nephew recalled, and he always liked to say “If there isn’t a sing-song it’s a bad night out”.

Mr Gildea recalled a party where his uncle borrowed a guitar to play “a song.”

“Two hours later you could not prise the guitar out of Brendan’s hands, as he tried to emulate Jimmy Hendrix,” he said.

“He may have always turned up to the party fashionably late, but it never truly started without him being there.”

Vinny Kilduff, a cousin of Brendan, played traditional laments on the tin-whistle during the course of the ceremony.

Una Nolan, soloist, was joined by the Knock Parish Choir in providing musical accompaniment. Following the Mass, the remains were interred in Knock Cemetery.