Funeral plans for avalanche victim

Una Finnegan
Una Finnegan

THE funeral of Una Finnegan will be held this weekend.

The 25-year-old junior doctor from Coleraine was one of four people killed in an avalanche in the Scottish Highlands last Saturday.

Now, almost exactly a week after the tragic incident happened, she will be laid to rest.

According to the funeral directors, a requiem Mass will be held at St Malachy’s Church in Coleraine at 12.30pm on Saturday, led by Canon Sean Rogan and assisted by Father Gregory Cormican.

The funeral procession will then go to Portstewart Cemetery.

Anyone, regardless of denomination, can attend the funeral.

But the family has requested that relatives only bring flowers.

They also ask that any donations be made to the Karen Hilltribes Trust or to Scottish Mountain Rescue.

Una died as a snow bank gave way when descending a mountain slope with friends.

A Royal Navy helicopter was sent to the scene at around 2pm, along with two different rescue squads.

Lorna Dane, 63, and from Coleraine, was Una’s leader in the Girl Guides and said she had always been the ‘outdoors’ type.

Una had been a member of the 6 Coleraine Guides until around age 17.

Before that she had belonged to the Brownies and Rainbows too – joining when she was only around four years old.

“I know her well through guiding,” said Mrs Dane.

“She was a great girl. She was a larger-than-life sort of character – always challenging and always wanting to do more exciting things.

“Una was a real outdoor girl. I wasn’t surprised she was up in the mountains.

“She always pushed the boundaries.”

Mrs Dane said Una had been selected to represent them at a gathering in Iceland in 2005, and had won a Baden-Powell Trefoil award – the highest accolade a Girl Guide could get.

As reported yesterday, junior doctor Una had a raft of extra-curricular achievements to match her stellar academic grades.

Asked what she felt when she heard the news of Una’s death, Mrs Dane said: “It was very, very upsetting – very, very tragic.”