Barra comes to a halt for funeral of schoolgirl, 14

Danny Woods
June 6, 2017

Roddy and Marion went on to say: "Eilidh's infectious personality touched everyone she met and it has been a privilege and an honour to have her as our daughter".

Nearly 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.

The teenager from Barra in the Outer Hebrides was killed when an explosion ripped through Manchester Arena following an Ariana Grande gig killing 22 - including many young concert-goers.

Nicola Sturgeon, the First Minister, said before the service that everyone in Scotland would join her in "sending our heartfelt sympathy to Eilidh's family and friends ahead of what will be the most hard day imaginable".

Laura MacIntyre, 15, her friend from Castlebay Community School, was injured in the attack and is still in hospital.

Piper Duncan Nicholson, the son of Eilidh's piping tutor Donald Patrick Nicholson, led the procession with three slow airs she had been learning. "It's devastating. I've known her since she was in primary school". "You couldn't get better".

Her body was taken to the family home in Castlebay. About two dozen vehicles followed as the family made its way home.

The funeral will be held at Church of Our Lady, Star of the Sea in Castlebay on Monday at 11am.

The family has thanked the community, emergency services and other organisations who have helped them.

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Scottish government ministers including the deputy first minister, John Swinney, and Humza Yousaf, minister for transport and islands, attended the funeral.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: 'I know that everyone in Scotland will join me in sending our heartfelt sympathy to Eilidh's family and friends ahead of what will be the most hard day imaginable.

Today family and friends of the terror victim gathered on the island for her funeral.

Greater Manchester Police Chief Constable Ian Hopkins and Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham have sent a message and wreath.

The trip had been a treat to celebrate Eilidh's birthday and was her first concert.

As a mark of respect in the tight-knit community, businesses shut to allow residents to attend the funeral.

Eilidh was from Vatersay, which is connected by a causeway to the island of Barra, where her funeral was held.

"People just wanted the family to see the feelings and the thoughts people have had for them for a long time".

Money is to be donated to Eilidh's favourite charity, Cobhair Bharraigh, a local home-based support service and day care centre.

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