IT is understood that the family of Eimear Noonan will return home from France this Thursday, after the Department of Justice in France issued a permit, enabling them to bring their 21-year-old daughter home.
The young teacher from Caher in Killanena, a recent graduate of University College Cork, the only daughter of Flan and Mary Noonan. She died tragically following a fall while out running in a public park in Annonay in the south of France were she was a teacher at Font Chevalier Primary School.
Her funeral mass is expected to take place this Sunday at 12 noon.
In a statement on social media, her brother and Clare U-21 hurler, Cathal, said the family would like to “thank all of those who have supported us in recent days”.
He said, “French authorities have now confirmed to us the heartbreaking news that our beloved Eimear died, following a fall while running on Wednesday, November 8.
“Eimear celebrated her 21st birthday in April and had been living in Annonay since September, where she worked as an English-language teacher.
“Eimear was a warm, bubbly person, who had already made a wide circle of friends there through her love of music and singing. She graduated last month from UCC, with an honours degree in Irish and French, was a talented violinist and, to our immense pride, was head of UCC Orchestra for her final year there,” he said.
Eimear will be greatly missed by all who knew her, especially her parents, Flan and Mary; her brothers, Declan, Michael and Cathal and all her family and friends.
“We will be forever grateful for the outpouring of love and support we have received. We would like to thank the Irish and French authorities and the people of Annonay for the kindness and compassion they have shown us. We now appeal for privacy in this most difficult time, as we bring Eimear home to her beloved Lough Graney and start the journey of grieving,” Cathal said.
Tributes were paid to the young teacher by the UCC Orchestra Society on social media, who described her as “the beating heart and soul” of their musical family.
“Eimear approached every undertaking with care and enthusiasm and it was no secret that this orchestra held a special place in her warm heart. Never asking for an ounce of recognition, Eimear gave herself fully to the running of the orchestra,” they said.
“Our hearts are broken, and rightly so. But we will strive to keep her spirit alive and it will always be heard and felt in the music of our orchestra.”