Singer Big Tom laid to rest in Co Monaghan

The congregation heard stories of Tom McBride's generosity and selflessness

Singer Big Tom laid to rest in Co Monaghan

A bag piper at the front of the hearse which contains the coffin of country singer Big Tom McBride as it arrives for the funeral at Saint Patrick’s Church, Oram, Castleblayney Co. Monaghan. Photo: Eamonn Farrell/RollingNews.ie.

Singer Big Tom has been laid to rest in his native Co Monaghan.

81-year-old Tom McBride passed away on Tuesday, less than 80 days after his wife Rose.

Family, friends and fans gathered for the King of Country's funeral mass in Oram this morning.

Singer Mick Flavin singing to large crowds of fans and people at the funeral of country singer Big Tom McBride at Saint Patrick’s Church, Oram, Castleblayney Co. Monaghan. Photo: Eamonn Farrell/RollingNews.ie

The congregation heard stories of Big Tom's generosity and selflessness.

Parish priest Father Leo Creelman said the singer was usually happiest outdoors.

He said: "Sometimes the outside came in, along with the associated smells, as he would lovingly incubate chick eggs in the good front room of the house - something that drove Rose mad."

Fr Creelman also highlighted Big Tom's "actions and kind gestures - some small, others big, and quite a few known only to those who benefited from his generous spirit and friendship."

The Taoiseach and President were among those who paid tribute to Big Tom earlier this week, with Michael D Higgins describing him as "one of the most charismatic and influential artists in Irish country music".

Thousands of fans gathered to pay their respects in Co Monaghan on Wednesday.

There are also plans to erect a statue in his honour in Castleblayney later this year.