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Funeral details for Tyrone hurler Damian Casey announced

The 29-year-old died in a swimming pool accident at a hotel in Spain last Friday after travelling to attend a friend’s wedding.

Neasa Cumiskey

Tyrone GAA star Damian Casey will be laid to rest this weekend.

The 29-year-old died in a swimming pool accident at a hotel in Spain last Friday after travelling to attend a friend’s wedding.

His remains will be repatriated home this evening ahead of his funeral, his club Eoghan Ruadh has confirmed.

They said that, as a GAA family, they would “allow his immediate family and close friends the time and space they need.”

The Kevin Bell Repatriation Trust, a charity which helps families across the island of Ireland bring back their loved ones’ remains from other countries, is assisting the family in making arrangements.

A wake for the prolific hurler will take place on Friday and Saturday, with the club adding: “We request that everyone attending the wake come directly to Eoghan Ruadh grounds, 97 Donaghmore Road, Dungannon, for transportation to and from the family home.”

Damian’s funeral mass will take place in St Patrick’s Church in Dungannon at 2pm on Sunday, followed by a burial service.

Tributes have poured in for the talented sportsman over the past few days, with Tyrone manager Michael McShane lauding him as a “magical hurler.”

"We’re so deeply saddened. Everyone is just in total shock, and trying to process the news,” he said.

“Damian was a magical hurler, he was a fabulous hurler. He represented Tyrone and was an unbelievable ambassador for them.

“But more than anything, Damian was an absolute gentleman to work with as a manager.

“He was one of life’s good guys, it was a pleasure to be in his company.”

McShane spoke of the joy he found in working with Casey as his star player.

“He was so, so easy to manage. He always gives you everything that he can give you,” he explained.

“But the biggest compliment that I can give him is that whenever Tyrone were in a spot of bother in a match, all you wanted was for the ball to be in Damian Casey’s hand, because you knew he would fix it.

“He just had that ability to conjure something up out of nothing. A fabulous hurler, a fabulous leader, but more than anything, an absolute gentleman.”

And Tyrone footballer Niall Morgan said that Damian was highly respected in the sporting community.

He said: “For such a high-profile person I never heard anybody say a bad word about him.

“No ego, no nothing. He was almost a protected species in Dungannon. Everybody looked up to him in Dungannon so much, he will be sadly missed.

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