The funeral took place in St Flannan's Church in Kirkintilloch where Margaret went to weekly Sunday mass pretty much all of her adult life. My wife Irene penned a few words about her mammy which she read out at the service. A tough thing to do, but she did the family proud. I've copied the words below as I think it's important to have them documented....
"Margaret O'Donnell was born in Croy on the 6th July 1936, she was the youngest daughter of a close knit Catholic family. Mum was really close to her siblings, Mary, Cathy, Eddie, Annie and Rose and had a normal, happy childhood. She left school and one of her first jobs was on the buses as a conductress, it was while working that she met my dad Brian, he asked her out and they began courting and fell in love. Times were hard, but they lasted, even though my Dad was sent down south and abroad as part of his national service. The family recently uncovered a love letter that my dad wrote to my mum while he was in Coventry and there was not a dry in the house. Everyone was in tears. They married in 1958 and went onto have us six children, Eddie, Marie, Ann, Brian, Elaine and me. Like everyone else, their marriage wasn't perfect, but the house that we grew up in was full of noise, laughter, arguments and love... and we certainly knew how to throw a party.
When my Dad passed away in 1992 my Mum was devastated, as you would be when you have lost the love of your life. It was as though she had lost part of herself and it took a few years for my Mum to emerge as her own person, but she coped by having a strong faith and surrounding herself with family and amazing friends, she always said that she wouldn't have been able to get through it if it were not for her friends, especially my Auntie Cathy, Mary Dickens, May and Wullie, Marcella and Auntie Ray.
As the years went by after the passing of my Dad my Mum kept herself busy, she volunteered at the credit union, took up bowling for a while, but what she enjoyed and kept her going apart from her strong faith was having a laugh with her friends at the bingo, going on holiday and looking after her grandchildren. I for one would not have been able to raise my children the way I wanted to without her support and help, she was always willing to help out and never complained, her catchphrase was "no problem" to anything I asked, even if she had something planned, she would change it as she loved her family more than anything.
My Mum was a bit of an introvert and didn't say two words when one would do, she was strong, stubborn and fiercely independent. Mum enjoyed a laugh and was a loyal friend, my Mum taught us strong values and the importance of family, faith, hard work, kindness, generosity, humour and love. My Mum died last Saturday at 1:05 am, she was in no pain and surrounded by all of her children. We are comforted by the knowledge that she will now be up in heaven with my Dad and her friends and she will be at peace. I know she will be greatly missed by everyone who knew and loved her.
A light has gone out; without so much as a flicker, and all we have left; is the precious memory of how brightly it burned; and the warmth it gave us. Love you Mum. XXX"