Tributes after Daniel O’Donnell’s mother Julia dies

Daniel O'Donnell with his mother Julia
Daniel O'Donnell with his mother Julia

Country singer Daniel O’Donnell has announced the death of his mother – Julia O’Donnell – who passed away in the early hours of yesterday.

The 94-year-old died in Dungloe Community Hospital, Co Donegal, with her family at her bedside.

News of her death was posted on Daniel’s official website in a post titled ‘rest in peace Mam’.

He wrote: “It is with great sadness that we have to announce that our dear mother Julia passed away peacefully in the loving care of the staff of Dungloe hospital surrounded by all her family on Sunday 18th May at 3.50am.

“My siblings John, Margaret, Kathleen, James and myself would like to thank you all for the kindness you have shown to her down through the years. May her gentle soul rest in peace.”

After her son’s success, Mrs O’Donnell became well-known for hosting tea parties at their family home in Kincasslagh, County Donegal.

Last week Daniel returned from touring in Scotland after his mother became unwell.

He once described his mother as “the biggest influence on my life”.

His wife, Majella O’Donnell, tweeted: “It is with sadness that I announce the death of Daniel’s mother Julia, rest in peace...”

Originally from Owey in Co Donegal, Daniel’s mother moved to Kincasslagh when she married Francie O’Donnell.

The couple went on to have five children.

She was widowed in 1968 when her husband died from a heart attack aged 49.

In recent years Mrs O’Donnell went to live with her daughter Kathleen and her family in Kincasslagh before moving to nursing home care in Dungloe.

Funeral details have not yet been released.

Messages of sympathy for Daniel yesterday flooded Twitter.

Anita Guidera ‏@anitaguidera said: ‘Julia O’Donnell, mother of Daniel, has died. RIP. I arrived hrs early to the first DOD [Daniel O’Donnell] gig I covered in ‘90 and she was already in her seat.’

Downtown Radio ‏@RadioDowntown tweeted: ‘Daniel O’Donnell’s mother Julia has passed away aged 94. Our thoughts are with his family this morning.’

Sean Perry ‏@perry_sean tweeted: ‘A tough year for iconic #Donegal man, Daniel O’Donnell. Wife, Majella battling breast cancer & mother, Julia (94) slips away. Rest in peace.’

Meanwhile Lisa McHugh ‏@LisaMcHughx tweeted: ‘Thinking of Daniel, Margo, Kathleen and all of the O’Donnell family today on the very sad loss of their mother.’