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Gone but Not Forgotten: Mourners Pay Tribute to Motorbike Enthusiast Whose Roaring Engine is Now Silent

Beloved Irish Motorbike Enthusiast Seanie Reilly Laid to Rest in Emotional Funeral Procession

The Longford community was left in shock following the tragic death of Seanie Reilly, a father-of-four, who died in a two-vehicle collision at Esker South, Ballinalee, Co Longford last Saturday afternoon. The much-loved motorbike enthusiast was remembered by a large number of mourners who brought the north Longford village of Drumlish to a standstill. Dozens of motorcyclists from Mr Reilly’s beloved Devils Disciples Motorcycle Club led the funeral procession into St Mary’s Church for a service that was as unique as it was befitting of the Longford man’s persona.

Mr Reilly’s coffin, draped in his own motorcycle club’s flag, was led into the church as dozens of sympathisers stood solemnly outside. Inside, chief celebrant Fr Bernard Hogan empathised with Mr Reilly’s wife Sinead and family, saying the tragic events of seven days earlier had cast a deep shadow over the local community. Fr Hogan described Mr Reilly as a biker who loved the thrill and freedom that came with the activity. “When Seanie set out on his motorbike last Saturday to help a friend, little did he know how his journey would end. Sinead and family would not be prepared for the devastating news that was to follow. The sense of shock and loss that filled the pages of social media over the past week from family, bikers, associates, neighbours and friends all expressing their sense of shock and loss at how Seanie had made his final journey and the sound of his motorbike silenced, to be heard no more,” Fr Hogan said.

Fr Hogan also spoke of the tributes that had been paid to Mr Reilly on social media, which illustrated his warm and affable character. “The tributes paid online testified to that. Some of the relevant quotes from his peers and friends speak of a true gentleman, a gentle giant with a willingness to help others and a smile that would turn any wet day into sunshine,” he said. Symbols that represented these sentiments were brought to the altar by close family members, including a helmet exemplifying Mr Reilly’s passion for motorbikes, family photographs and a cup of tea, referencing the auto electrician specialist’s genial nature.

In a moving eulogy, Mr Reilly’s long-time friend and Devils Disciples Motorcycle Club member, BA, spoke of a man who, together with his wife Sinead, dedicated his life to helping others, most typically through his involvement with Longford Food Bank. “They loved and had pride in their community and invited untold numbers of people into their home for food and shelter,” he said. “It occurred to me then that it was this trait that played no small part in the makings of this man, a man of such physical presence. He loved his family, he doted on his children and was very proud of them. He was loved by everyone whose lives he touched. Seanie (Bull) Reilly lives in our hearts now and I am lucky to have met him. He was my friend and I will miss him.”

Following the funeral mass, a large convoy of motorcycles led Mr Reilly’s hearse to Longford’s Ballymacormack Cemetery for burial. The late Mr Reilly is survived by his wife Sinead, sons Darragh, Darwin and Peter, daughter Katie. The community of Longford will remember Mr Reilly for his passion for motorbikes, his dedication to helping others and his warm and affable character. He will be greatly missed by all who knew him.

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