The doves flew up and up, then dived and circled back towards Jill’s father [George McKeon] and the gathering. They then flew west in formation, away from him, towards Perth where he lives and onward, perhaps, towards Ireland.
The hug he then locked into with Jill’s husband Tom Meagher seemed endless and unable to be tighter. The silence at this point was deafening. The doves had gone. The music that played throughout the service had stopped. Meagher had earlier bade her farewell with the words: “Goodbye, my beautiful, funny girl. I will love you forever.”
He also used the gaelic phrase “slán abhaile mo chara”, meaning “safe home my friend”.
Yet Meagher also remembered his mischievous, impulsive wife as a person who cried at television sitcom themes, got a tattoo she regretted and had 20 jobs in 17 months.
Edith McKeon — Jill’s small Irish mother with an enormous personality — was perhaps behind the unusual funeral touch of some of the women wearing outlandish-coloured high heels.