Hundreds attend funeral of Darren Rodgers

Darren Rodgers.
Darren Rodgers.

St. Patrick’s Parish Church in Ballymena was packed today for the funeral of Darren Rodgers, the local man who died in an accidental fall in France where he was supporting Northern Ireland.

Darren (24) fell from a wall in Nice on June 13.

A Braid United shirt was placed at the side of the pitch before Northern Ireland's win over Ukraine in Lyon - a tribute to Ballymena man Darren Rodgers.

A Braid United shirt was placed at the side of the pitch before Northern Ireland's win over Ukraine in Lyon - a tribute to Ballymena man Darren Rodgers.

And some mourners wore Northern Ireland shirts as members of the Church Lads’ Brigade and Braid United FC, for whom Darren played, formed a guard of honour. Ahead of the funeral, Mr Rodgers’s father Paul extended the family’s thanks to all those who had paid tribute to his son.

He said: “On behalf of myself, my wife, and the entire Rodgers family, we would like to convey our sincere and heartfelt thanks to every single person who has sent us cards, called with us and supported ourselves and Darren all over Ireland, Europe and also internationally.

“The sheer amount of love, goodwill and outpouring of grief has left us with memories that will live with us the rest of our lives.

“To all the supporters from every country who have left mementos, shirts, scarves, flags and messages of love and support at the site of Darren’s accident, we can never express how much all of this means to us.”