This week, family, friends and business associates of Addlestone-based Irishman Noel ‘Ned’ O’Shea said a well-rehearsed final farewell to the much-loved Kerryman.
Not being one to ever miss a party, when he was diagnosed with untreatable lung and spine cancer back in April of this year, 71yr old Ned decided to get straight to work arranging and staging a practice wake, in order that he could take part in the celebration.
The practice party, which was held at Ottershaw Social Club last month, was a huge success, with ‘booze & buffet’ and live music from Irish band ‘McGinty & The Diddymen’.
Ned’s brief battle with cancer came to an end on 16th November at the Sam Beare Hospice. Lodge Brothers, the 7th generation family-owned funeral directors in Addlestone, conducted the funeral, which took place on Tuesday 27th November.
His son Tim and daughter Illona both read moving tributes including some hilarious stories of his many antics during his time working for British Airways.
At his request, the entire congregation belted out ‘The Wild Rover’ in his honour. It was his favourite and he sung it at every birthday and party.
Then, afterwards, at Ottershaw Social Club, family and friends enjoyed the wake for the second time.
Director Beverley Lodge knew Ned, as he had worked alongside her husband at British Airways.
“Ned was a legend and a real character, with many a story to tell – and I was honoured to lead the hearse through the town. Hundreds of friends and family came to the wake, which was testament to his popularity within the local community. “