Hundreds of mourners pay respects to Dean McIlwaine

Hundreds of mourners gathered at Carnmoney Presbyterian Church for the funeral. Pic by Press Eye - Declan Roughan.
Hundreds of mourners gathered at Carnmoney Presbyterian Church for the funeral. Pic by Press Eye - Declan Roughan.

Several hundred people gathered at Carnmoney Presbyterian Church to pay their respects to Newtownabbey man, Dean McIlwaine (22).

The popular barber passed away suddenly on July 13.

Dean's mother Karen and his father Rodney arrive at Carnmoney Presbyterian Church for the funeral of their son. Pic by Press Eye - Declan Roughan.

Dean's mother Karen and his father Rodney arrive at Carnmoney Presbyterian Church for the funeral of their son. Pic by Press Eye - Declan Roughan.

Rev John Dickinson told mourners of Dean’s passion for cycling, golf and barbering and how the former Ballyclare Secondary School pupil had a kindly nature.

Rev Dickinson said: “He was kind and generous, both to his parents and his family and others.

“He had been teaching his cousin and a friend to cut hair. He loved style and clothes and was immaculately turned out.

“He was soft-hearted in many ways and when you got to know him it was hard not to love him.”

Dean had been set to open a new barber’s shop in Carnmoney later this month.

Rev Dickinson added: “He had been working to finish off the barber’s shop in Woodford where he was going to start his new business.

“The shop was going to be finished to a very high standard.”

Commenting on how the funeral gave Dean’s family and friends a chance to remember his life, Rev Dickinson explained: “His parents and friends know so little about the last hours of his life and will probably never know exactly what happened and we are not here today to speculate on that.

“On top of that, the stresses of the search for Dean which stretched out over nine long days and nights have been hard to deal with.

“This is why today has been so important - because with the help of his friends, we have tried to remember and give thanks for his short but wonderful life.”

Dean was buried at Carnmoney Cemetery following the service.