Father-of-two who died following altercation in Belfast city centre spent his time "loving, laughing and inspiring"
A father-of-two, who died following an altercation in Belfast city centre, spent the time before he death "loving, laughing and inspiring", mourners at his funeral have been told.
Family and friends of Paul McCready, who yesterday gathered at Our Lady of Perpetual Succour Church at Deanby Gardens in the Oldpark area for Requiem Mass, heard his death described as "unbearably sad and cruel".
The 31-year-old died at the Royal Victoria Hospital at around 12.50am on Sunday.
The father-of-two, who was engaged to be married, had been involved in an altercation which began in the Northern Whig bar in Belfast city centre and spilled onto Donegall Street at around 12.50am.
It is thought he died in a ‘one-punch' attack.
A 30-year-old man arrested at the scene was later released pending a report to the Public Prosecution Service.
Fr Peter Carlin told those gathered yesterday that Mr McCready's death was "engulfing" for his loved ones.
"I wouldn't have the temerity to try to sum Paul up but if I was doing so I would start with a very significant date, 8th September when he was engaged to Ruth and I think it's telling that from that day forward, they were never a day apart," he said.
"He loved Eóin and Paul to bits, never leaving Eóin's side in his diagnosis and revelling in Paul's cheekiness and mischievousness".
Fr Carlin said Mr McCready had "fierce determination" which showed on the field, as a player for Cliftonville 2nds and as a coach with Newington under-eights.
"Paul's passion and his commitment showed as a dad, as a player, as a coach and also as a work colleague," he said.
"Nothing was ever too much trouble for Paul for his family.
"Paul was baptised here in the Church of Our Lady of Perpetual Help. He could not control the way he died but he could control the time before he died and that was spent in loving and touching many people around him. Loving, laughing and inspiring".
Following Requiem Mass, burial took place in Carnmoney Cemetery.