Almost 1000 people attended the funeral of 14-year-old Eilidh MacLeod from Barra today (Monday), the day after her remains were flown home on a specially chartered flight.
Mass was held at 11.15am in the church of Our Lady, Star of the Sea, in Castlebay. The service opened with a recording of Eilidh, a keen piper, playing ‘Both Sides The Tweed’.
Father John Paul MacKinnon celebrated the mass, which was also relayed to mourners in the nearby Castlebay hall.
Fr MacKinnon said: “Eilidh packed a lot into her 14 years. 14 happy years. That’s so important for us to remember today – Eilidh was a happy girl, she had 14 happy years and in the last few days of her life she was the happiest you could ever imagine.
“Those memories of Eilidh will live on in all our hearts. Every year of her life was precious to us and we thank God for blessing us with her precious life. Roddy and Marion were blessed with a beautiful daughter, Shona and Laura were blessed with a wonderful sister, our island was blessed to have such a young talented girl growing up on it. Even though there is a great sadness here today there is a great thankfulness to God for blessing us with Eilidh’s life. Our loss is heaven’s gain.”
After the mass, Eilidh was taken on her final journey to the graveyard in Vatersay, where she grew up.
Eilidh’s friend Laura MacIntyre is still in hospital in Manchester, though she is recovering. Both girls attended the Ariana Grande concert in Manchester Arena on 22nd May when a suicide bomber blew himself up and killed 22 people, injuring over 60.