The funeral of the young Tyrone GAA player who passed away suddenly in Australia is to be held this weekend.
Cookstown man Matthew McGuigan, or Matty as he was known to his friends and family, had only arrived in Australia days before he died on Saturday (December 2).
He was a former captain of Kildress Wolfe Tones and also helped to manage underage teams.
Meanwhile, a fundraiser set up on GoFundMe to support the family has raised over £50,000.
Matthew’s remains will leave Niall A. Loughran’s Funeral home today (Thursday) at 2:30pm going to his grandparents’ residence at 30 Killucan Road, Cookstown, to repose.
His wake will commence to the public at 10am on Friday, December 15. Matthew’s wake is private to family only on Thursday.
The funeral is to be held on Sunday (December 17) at 1pm, going to St. Mary’s Church, Dunamore for Requiem Mass at 2pm. He will be buried afterwards in the adjoining cemetery.
A death notice described Matthew as the much loved son of Mel and Grainne, the precious brother of Darragh, Liam and Karol, the cherished grandson of Matt and Colette and the late Tommy and Annie.
He was also the loving partner of Clodagh.
In a tribute on social media, Kildress Wolfe Tones described Matty as their “shining light” and said the club was in “dark places” following Matty’s “totally traumatising” passing.
The statement said that Matty was heavily involved in the club right up to his passing, maintaining his “unrivalled standards” off the pitch – having even chaired the elections at the club’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) last week.
It continued: “All with the class, style, wisdom, good-naturedness, humour and integrity that others take decades to develop – if ever. Gifted with talent that he then carried so well.
“He brought our Club, and everybody in it or associated with it, joy, delight, leadership, example, fun, and hard, hard work. Just the best of us. If you knew Matty, no profile of him is necessary. And if you didn’t know him, probably no profile is possible.
Donations in lieu of flowers if desired to go to The Kevin Bell Repatriation Trust c/o the family. All enquiries to Niall A. Loughran Funeral Directors, Cookstown, 028 8676 5454.