ONE of the largest wakes and funeral seen in north Donegal in recent years followed the passing of Kathleen Whyte (nee Doherty) of Race End, Ballyare, Letterkenny.
Kathleen, who was laid to rest on her 53rd birthday on Monday was a dear daughter, sister, aunt, godmother and a great friend to everyone who came in contact with her over her short years.
Born in Glasgow, her family returned to live in Gortnalake, Creeslough in the early 1970s. She was a former pupil of PCC Falcarragh before studying accountancy. For almost a decade she was well known as an employee of Magees Pharmacy in Letterkenny.
Her daily commute from Creeslough to Letterkenny and back in her distinctive yellow Ford Fiesta was among many of the fond memories recalled by the thousands who attended her wake and funeral.
It was appropriate the sun shone brightly on Monday for her funeral because Kathleen loved the sun. She greeted every day at 5.30am and her strong work ethic and bright bubbly smile endeared her to many people whether at work or socially.
In the ‘90s she purchased the Tramore Inn in Downings and for almost a decade turned the business into a busy restaurant and public house. She set up home with her husband Johnny from Ballykelly at Ballyare beside her beloved sister Mary T. Toye.
Kathleen once said that the three most special and enjoyable events in her life were spending time with her family, the holiday of a lifetime with her much loved sister, Mary Teresa and adopted sister Anne Marie in New York on her 50th birthday and her wedding day to Johnny.
One of her great sayings was that she had to always ‘look your Georgie Best’.
Her funeral on Monday in St Columba’s Church Kilmacrennan was celebrated by her friend Fr Paddy Dunne, PP Kilmacrennan assisted by Fr Eamon McLaughlin, CC Letterkenny, Fr Jonathan Flood CC Creeslough, Fr Patrick McGarvey PP Fanad and Fr Michael Conaghan, former PP Kilmacrennan.
Following Requiem Mass the remains were taken to Doe Ccemetery for burial.
Kathleen is survived by her husband Johnny, parents Neilie and Mary, sister Mary T, brothers, Charlie and Terry, brother-in-law Paddy Toye, sisters in-law, Margaret and Anne, nieces, nephews and a wide circle of family and friends.