A popular garda sergeant in the Cahir district, who passed away last Saturday after a brave battle with illness, was remembered at his funeral for the huge contribution he made to the communities he served in during his career.
Sgt Niall O’Halloran from Kilmalogue, Cahir, was laid to rest at the New Cemetery in Grange yesterday afternoon (Tuesday, November 17) following Requiem Mass at St Nicholas Church, Grange.
The untimely death of the 47-year-old native of Newrath, Waterford, has deeply saddened all his garda colleagues, his local community and all who were privileged to know him during his two decades of distinguished service in An Garda Síochána.
The native of Newrath, Waterford was stationed in Ardfinnan up until his recent promotion to the rank of sergeant. He also served in Cahir, Tipperary, Templemore and Cashel during his years in the force.
After his funeral Mass on Tuesday, garda colleagues formed a guard of honour from St Nicholas Church gates to the cemetery as his coffin was being brought on its final journey. Local community representatives also formed a guard of honour from the church door to the gate. A Garda bugler played the Last Post over his grave.
In his Requiem Mass homily, Fr Michael Toomey, PP of Ardfinnan, paid tribute to Sgt O’Halloran’s dedication as a garda.
“Niall saw it more than just a job but a true vocation - helping, serving, assisting and getting involved in so many local and community activities whilst maintaining law and order, which is not easy at the best of times.”
He described how Niall was always happy to care for older members of the community, keeping them safe and helping with community Christmas parties and having a sing song when called upon. Fr Toomey noted Facebook was inundated with tributes to Niall over the past few days and he singled out one tribute stating he was the “absolute essence of a community guard” as a very apt description of him
Sgt O'Halloran is survived by his heartbroken wife Sandra (neé Cooney), beloved son Richard, father Séan, who is a retired garda chief superintendent; mother Nellie, brothers Tomas, David, Shane and Michael, sisters Eleanor, Joanne and Emily, mother-in-law Eileen, brothers-in-law Paul and Adrian, sisters-in-law Linda, June and Catherine, aunts, uncles, nephews, nieces, extended family, garda colleagues and many friends