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Mourners farewell McCarthy

Sportal September 20, 2012, 3:22 pm
John McCarthy funeral

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Thousands have gathered across three separate venues for the funeral of AFL footballer John McCarthy.

The 22-year-old died just over a week ago after falling from the roof of a hotel in Las Vegas while on an end-of-season holiday with team-mates.

Players from his former AFL teams Port Adelaide and Collingwood as well as former team-mates from his local footy club were among the mourners at the main service in McCarthy's home town Sorrento on Thursday.

The service was shown on screens outside the church and broadcast live to mourners watching at Alberton Oval in Adelaide and the Westpac Centre in Melbourne.

His mother Catherine McCarthy delivered a eulogy at the packed service in the Mornington Peninsula town, describing him as a rising football star and likeable character.

"He loved his family, he loved his team-mates," Mrs McCarthy told a mass at St Mary's Star of the Sea Catholic Church.

"Our Johnny boy is one of the most extraordinary human beings we have been privileged to know.

"We could not have loved him more."

She said the McCarthy family, including her husband Shane, daughters Frances, Jane and Elizabeth and son Matthew, had been amazed by the public support since John's death.

"We are overwhelmed and humbled by the outpouring of love and support for our beautiful boy," she said.

AFL chief executive Andrew Demetriou was among the mourners, with representatives from all AFL clubs also present.

In addition to former team-mates from the Power and Magpies, Richmond captain Chris Newman, Western Bulldogs captain Matthew Boyd and team-mate Daniel Cross, Melbourne's Nathan Jones, Geelong's Tom Lonergan, ex-Collingwood and Gold Coast ruckman Josh Fraser and former Pie Shane O'Bree were among those in attendance.

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