BY Martin Dunlop | December 12 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS     print icon print

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Scotland mourns for PC Kirsty Nelis

Archbishop Tartaglia leads funeral for PC killed in Glasgow helicopter crash. Mass at St Andrew’s Cathedral, attended by First Minister Alex Salmond

Archbishop Philip Tartaglia led mourners at yesterday’s funeral Mass for PC Kirsty Nelis, who died in the police helicopter that crashed into Glasgow’s Clutha Vaults bar on Friday November 29.

Police colleagues joined mourning relatives at the funeral, which was held at Glasgow’s St Andrew’s Cathedral, a short distance from the Clutha pub.

PC Nelis, 36, was one of three people in the helicopter who died, along with PC Tony Collins and civilian pilot David Trail. Six people inside the bar were also killed.

Scotland’s First Minister Alex Salmond and Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill attended the funeral, with Lord Provost Sadie Docherty and Glasgow City Council leader Gordon Matheson also present.

Speaking to those gathered, Archbishop Tartaglia said ‘we offer our deepest sympathies to Kirsty’s husband, Mark, to her mum and dad, to her two brothers, and to all her relatives and friends.’

“We know that you have been devastated by Kirsty’s tragic, sudden and untimely loss,” the Archbishop of Glasgow said. “Together with you, putting our hope in Jesus, we pray for her eternal rest. And in a special way we offer our prayerful sympathies to her colleagues in the police service.”

In the aftermath of the tragic accident at the Clutha bar, clergy from St Andrew’s Cathedral were on hand to offer assistance, comfort and to pray for those affected by the crash, and to support those waiting for news on their loved ones.

The pub’s owner, Alan Crossan, and manager, Saverio Petri, who was using crutches, attended yesterday’s funeral.

Ten uniformed police officers lined the entrance to the cathedral and saluted as PC Nelis’ coffin was carried in to the cathedral to the sound of a lone piper.

A police hat sat atop the coffin, which was draped with a white flag bearing the Police Scotland emblem.

A message on the back of the funeral order of service read: “The family wishes to thank all relatives, friends and colleagues for their attendance here today, and for the overwhelming kindness, love and support shown at this sad time.”

The six other victims of the Clutha bar helicopter crash were Gary Arthur, Samuel McGhee, Colin Gibson, Robert Jenkins, John McGarrigle and Mark O’Prey.

 

—martin@sconews.co.uk

 

Pic: Andrew Milligan/PA Wire/Press Association Images

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