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'Indescribable' Partner of tragic Paddy Hennessy says he was 'unbelievably kind and decent' man

Kitty says that, in spite of all the speculation surrounding the brothers' deaths, she does not believe cause of tragedy will ever be known

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The late Paddy Hennessy’s partner Kitty.

The late Paddy Hennessy’s partner Kitty.

The late Paddy Hennessy’s partner Kitty.

The devastated partner of Paddy Hennessy, one of three brothers to die in last week's horror double-murder suicide in Cork, has described the 59-year-old as 'the love of my life'.

In a heart-breaking interview with the Sunday World, Kitty Russell, Paddy's partner of 17 years, told how his last words to her were: 'I'll see you tomorrow,' as he kissed her on the cheek and went off to chop blocks on the farm where he would be killed hours later.

Kitty also told this newspaper, in spite of all the speculation surrounding the brothers' deaths, she does not believe the cause of the horrific tragedy will ever be known.

"The last time I saw Pat - he was here last Thursday and he was just going out to do the blocks," a heartbroken Kitty recalled.

"He gave me a kiss and said 'goodbye, I'll see you tomorrow,' and that was the last thing I heard until May rang me.

"She was looking for him and she thought he was here.

"And I said: 'May, he's gone up since a quarter to three'.

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Paddy Hennessy (right) with his brother Willie

Paddy Hennessy (right) with his brother Willie

Paddy Hennessy (right) with his brother Willie

"Anymore than that now, I don't know.

"We don't know what happened. Nobody does. I don't think we'll ever know."

Describing her relationship with Paddy, Kitty described him as the kindest, most decent man she has come across in her lifetime.

"I met him at a dance here in Tipperary town and we've been together 17 years," she said.

"It was love at first sight for me.

"D'you know? You can't explain what it is, but for me it was love at first sight anyway.

"The love of my life. And he did everything for me.

"He rang me every day and if he wasn't here, he'd ring me every night. He was just an unbelievable man.

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Willie and Paddy Hennessy.

Willie and Paddy Hennessy.

Willie and Paddy Hennessy.

"Everyone that knows Paddy would say the same. And everybody knows him because he delivered blocks to so many people.

"Today, it's five past two now, and I should be waiting for him here.

"He'd arrive down with the car, trailer full, because he delivered here in Tipp and the two of us would go around and we'd deliver to all the people. And they (Paddy's customers) are all just devastated too.

"He'd leave the blocks to the people even if they weren't there.

"No-one else would do that without getting money - but he did.

"He was just an unbelievable man. He was unbelievably kind and decent, you would never meet another man like him - and he was like that to everybody, even to a stranger.

"He was indescribable, he was such a good man. He loved his handball but he had a bad hip and he was waiting on a hip replacement so he couldn't play.

"He hadn't played in five or six years but he loved it and he loved hurling, he loved all sport really."

Claims persist that a row over farm income could have sparked last week's triple tragedy on the farm in Curraghgorm, but Kitty said she had never heard a cross word exchanged between the three brothers.

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The brothers are removed after their untimely death.

The brothers are removed after their untimely death.

The brothers are removed after their untimely death.

"The three of them were very close and they worked together," she said.

"That's why we just can't understand this.

"I worked with them up above (in Curraghgorm), the four of us together and I never heard one bad word between them ever.

"Willie was a pure gentleman as well.

"Paddy got a stroke in October and it was just luck that he was here when it happened.

"It was on a Monday, the Bank Holiday Monday, so he wouldn't normally have been here.

"But thank God he was okay and he was just starting to come round after the stroke.

"While he was recovering, Willie came on and did his runs for him, to keep it going for him.

"They were very close and, even with Johnny, they all used help each other.

"There was never a cross word between the three of them, that's why this is all just so unbelievable."

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Gardai at the site in Cork where the tragedy took place.

Gardai at the site in Cork where the tragedy took place.

Gardai at the site in Cork where the tragedy took place.

Gardai investigating the murders of Paddy and older brother Willie and the subsequent suicide of youngest brother Johnny, believe that the two older men were still alive by the time Johnny phoned a relative and reported 'awful fighting' at the farm.

After the relative reported the call to gardai, it's understood an officer spoke with Johnny by phone but he assured them the row had blown over and there was no need for a patrol car to visit the farm.

GSOC have since launched an investigation into the contact between gardai and Johnny - as is routine in such cases.

Later Thursday night, Paddy's daughter and her mum called to the farm to look for him only to discover him lying dead in the farmyard - 200 meters from the small property on the 17 acre farm where Johnny lived.

Gardai would later discover Willie's remains in a shed near the house.

The suspected murder weapon, a log splitting axe, was located near his body.

An alert was issued for Johnny's red Toyota Corolla van, which was missing from the farm, and the vehicle was subsequently located abandoned near St Joseph's Church in nearby Killacluig.

An Air Support Unit located Johnny's remains in the River Funshion at approximately 1pm on the Friday.

All three men were laid to rest following funeral services in Mitchelstown this week.

On Wednesday, Johnny was laid to rest in the same plot as his brother Jer, who predeceased the siblings.

On Thursday, Willie and Paddy were laid to rest following their funeral mass at the church of Our Lady Conceived without Sin in Mitchelstown.

Kitty said her hope now is that everyone will remember Paddy for the kind person he was.

"I would like everyone to know the man that he was," she said.

"He's been so good to me over the 17 years, to my children and to my grandchildren.

"They just adored him.

"They thought of him as a second grandad.

"One of them was here last night and when she saw this picture us we just couldn't pacify her.

"We'd explained to them (all the grandchildren) that Paddy was gone to Heaven.

"But when she saw the picture she just kept saying over and over: 'I want Paddy back. Go and bring him back.'

"They loved him. They adored him … it was like they were his own grandchildren.

"You would never meet a kinder man than Paddy and if you met anyone they could never tell you any different.

"I have a son and a daughter and four grand-children and they are my rock now. But write a nice article about Paddy and I'll keep it and frame it."

If you have been affected by this story, you can contact Samaritans on 116 123 or email jo@samaritans.ie

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