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Hundreds join Dublin vigil to remember woman who died while sleeping rough | BreakingNews.ie



Several hundred people have gathered to pay their respects to a woman who died sleeping rough in Dublin city centre.

Ann Delaney (47), a nurse and mother of a 17-year-old daughter from Crettyard, Co Laois, died around 9am on Sunday close to the Tesco Express on Aungier Street.

Ms Delaney, who is understood to have previously worked in a Dublin hospital, had been living rough for at least seven years. She regularly stayed at a spot next door to the supermarket.

Numerous flowers and candles were left at the spot where she slept and where her body was discovered.

Attending the vigil on Monday evening was Jackie Feeney, who got to know Ms Delaney when she first slept rough on Thomas Street. “I sat with her here overnight at 11pm and we would have a chat and a coffee. A man went to buy her something in Tescos and when he came back out she was gone. She was still alive at 6am on Sunday.”

“Two close relatives died in her life in a car crash and that affected her badly. She was very close to her mother and her daughter who is doing her Leaving Cert.”

From about 7pm people began to gather at the makeshift shrine in her memory before the vigil began at 8pm. Scores of members of the public holding red and pink balloons in her memory released them as her favourite song, Crazy World by Aslan, was played out over a sound system.

Chris O’Reilly, who organises the Liberty Soup Run, told the large crowd that “everyone knew Ann. She was just an amazing person, an amazing woman. She had rough times in life like us all and, unfortunately, Ann ended up on the streets.

“She never saw her way out, God love her, she’s at peace now, she’s out of pain. This is for Ann’s family as well, we are all behind you. Ann was our family as well. We classed her as a sister. She loved Liverpool soccer club and that’s why there are so many people holding red balloons.”

Mr O’Reilly continued: “To see all of this support is just incredible. As a community and wider community, there are people here from all over. Ann was a gem, she was such a lovely lady.

“If you brought her items, she’d ask if it was second-hand but she wanted the new stuff, she still had her sense of humour. Ann could crack a joke and there were days she didn’t want to talk to you because of what she was going through but we all accepted that.”

Mr O’Reilly said Ann would be missed “so much” and appealed to people to attend her funeral to show their respects to her and her family.

A woman attending the vigil said she had come because she chatted to Ms Delaney every Saturday going to and coming from Mass at White Friar’s Church.

“I went into Tesco one day to get her something. She was lovely to chat to and a lovely person. It can be anybody’s story.”

Ms Delaney’s funeral arrangements are yet to be announced.

Gardaí said in a statement: “Having been notified by staff at St James Hospital, as per protocol, An Garda Síochána is conducting inquiries into a sudden death of a female which occurred on February 25 for the purpose of preparing a file for the coroner.”

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