Funeral and baby naming service in Scotland

Bespoke Civil Ceremonies
40 Morlich Place
KY13 8BW
United Kingdom

Tel: 07752 212 067

A Service of Thanksgiving for
the life, love and faith of

Eileen McCoy

3rd January 1930 -
8th October 2005

Tribute from celebrant Neil Dorward

Eileen McCoy was born into a close and loving family on 30th April, 1910 in Carmoney, Northern Ireland. As you know, you possibly heard stories from her childhood over and over again, but these were good and happy memories; of simply playing and being with her brothers and sisters and cousins in Carmoney.

And Carmoney, of course, is the place where the young Eileen grew up into a fine looking young woman and Hugh was apparently not the only one to have a glint in his eye for Eileen. However one of Eileen’s best friends Martha – who was later to become Martha McCoy- set Eileen and Hugh up as an item and as we say the rest is all history. I suppose when we think of it , it is only right that Eileen should have got so much attention in those early years because, in the family home there was a tradition every Sunday that the girls- not the boys- had to do Sunday jobs and listen to Jim Reeves, while the boys, apparently were let off lightly. Maybe those wee pennies Eileen earned helped her as a young girl to go out of die her hair blond, put on that fake sun tan and draw those pencil lines on the backs of her legs. Oh boy would Eileen be noticed now. Stick on a pair of stiletto heels, send her off to the dancing every Saturday night and BINGO Eileen was a girl who the boys sat up and noticed. Go on yersel Eileen!

As a young woman, Eileen worked hard in the mills as a spinner but by August 1947, Eileen had settled down with her sweetheart Hugh and soon they were travelling the world with the RAF and this is when Eileen developed her great love for Scotland. The family still has good happy memories from their days at RAF Kinloss- the swimming pool, the picture house, the darts, the bingo, the NAAFI and their wee dog Bimbo. Then from Kinloss, the family moved for a few years to Cyprus (her favourite posting)- the sunshine and the oranges that unknown to Eileen the girls used to pinch from the orange man.

Eileen loved her family and the family’s love for their mum is very much one to be proud of. Your mum was a very proud mother and had great affection for her children and grand children, daughter in laws and those fine looking sons in law. Although Eileen only moved up here to Scotland a few weeks ago, all of the family showed great kindness to her: Barbara and Steve, Norma and John, Heather and Jimmy, Diane and Brian , Victor and Elaine, Kaz, young Claire and Debbie and of course two very special treasures little Oliver and Matthew. It is wonderful to have a mum, a gran, a mother in law as a friend.

Perhaps it was the boys - but I don’t think it was them- that helped Eileen develop her great love of sport especially darts. She won loads of trophies and loved watching darts and all the sports on the telly. Your mum loved her bingo and her lottery, she loved her work in the NAAFI and she loved her Jim Reeves but most of all she just loved her family and the way they cared for her and…. she dearly loved her husband Hugh

I’m sure you know that around 1967, Hugh had to go away for a year to work but did you know that almost every night without fail, Eileen wrote to Hugh and she wrote by candlelight because of the power cuts. But what a lovely picture to have, of your mum and dad very much united in love, even though they were apart, and I am sure that since your dad’s death in 1978, even though they were physically apart, they still were very much united in their hearts and in their spirits. Today, we know, that they will be together at long last and together they will remain forever and ever. That light, that spark which once flickered in a candle light in 1967 has now been reignited again and that light that spark will never go out. In fact two families are united this day – the family in heaven and the family on earth. Of course we will all dearly miss Eileen and her smile but today she is at peace, in heaven and she still very much lives on in our hearts and minds and memories.

May she rest in peace, with Hugh and Hugh until that day when we meet her again and are greeted by that loving and familiar smile.


Poem read by Debbie

Do not stand at my grave and weep
I am not there, I do not sleep
I am a 1,000 winds that blow
I am the diamond glints on snow
I am the sun on ripened grain
I am the gentle autumn rain
When you awaken in the morning’s hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled light
I am the soft star that shines at night
Do not stand at my grave and cry
I am not there; I did not die.


Poem read by John

Don’t grieve for me now I’m free
I’m following the path God made for me
I took his hand, I heard him call
Then turned and bade farewell to all

I could not stay another day
To laugh, to love, to sing, to play
Tasks left undone must stay that way
I found my peace at close of day

And if my parting left a void
Then filled it with remembering joy
A friendship shared, a laugh, a kiss
Ah yes these things I too will miss

Be not burdened deep with sorrow
I wish you the sunshine of tomorrow
My life’s been full I’ve savoured much
Good friends, good times, a loved ones touch

Perhaps my time seemed all to brief
Don’t lengthen it now with undue grief
Lift up your heart and share with me
God wants me now………He set me free

Eileen and her familiar loving smile


The Late Eileen McCoy - by John Gilfillan

I feel it is my duty to stand before you all today, to speak about a family’s love and devotion to their loving mum. It is almost 30 years since I met Eileen and during that time I have often witnessed a most precious and unbending commitment and affection from her loving family, Barbara, Hugh, Norma, Heather, Diane and Victor.

When I first ventured into the McCoy household all those years back, I was probably a bit of a Jack the lad and would think that I aroused some unease and maybe even suspicion from the eagle eyed Eileen McCoy, this was confirmed when after a few visits she commented to Norma, “ your boyfriend John seems alright but every time I meet him he is drunk”.  The sad thing is she was right.

Mind you I had a hard act to follow, there was the model son in law, Steve the career minded soldier who was going places and indeed a hard act to follow. Jimmy was also there of course which pleased me as he made even me look good then Brian came along and that most definitely made me look good. Seriously though Steve, Jimmy, myself and Brian always had a mutual respect with Mum - until that time in Arborfield when I switched channels from the live Embassy World Champion dart competition to an Old Firm football match.  Yes it took along time for her to forgive me for that.

But the main reason why I stand before you is not really to talk about us sons in law but to highlight a families unyielding love for their mum certainly over the course of the last few years but in particular the past few months.

How can we forget how Barbara, Heather and Victor cared so passionately for mum and was with her every step of the way during her illness and subsequent operation five years ago in Wolverhampton.

And in more recent times how can we forget the immense efforts by Norma and Diane to prepare a lovely house to allow their mum to settle comfortably in Cardenden, I was simply taken aback by the dedication and endevour to decorate this house to a standard that would suit mum’s taste

And how can we forget the loving tender nursing care prior to her being admitted to Western General Hospital three weeks ago, Norma and Diane showed an overwhelming desire to ensure mum was cared for and I truly admire the manner in which they went about their loyal duties.  They cared for her, they nursed her, they encouraged her and they painstakingly did all they could to ensure her comfort and dignity.  Looking after her needs was never a chore, simply an unselfish act of love and devotion.

There are far too many loving relatives here today to mention everyone by name particularly the contribution from all the grandchildren who treated their Nan as a friend and sometimes as a close ally who was their to offer advice when needed, advice which was always effectual and correct.

I feel however compelled to mention another act of thoughtfulness and consideration during mum’s final days at home, mum would always feel better if she looked nice.  Angela knew this and so did her lovely friend, Gale, hairdressers who regularly drove the distance from Kennoway to Cardenden simply to ensure that Nan although feeling quite unwell was at least looking her best, girls believe me this did not go unnoticed and on behalf of the family we offer our heartfelt thanks.

That’s all, I can speak about mum all day but I really just wanted to express my utmost respect and esteem to a family sitting here today who although in mourning should all be proud of the fact that their mum was indeed an honoured and privileged woman to have such a most concerned and a most protective family who sincerely loved their mum and always will.

There are examples to be drawn from this, examples of love, kindness and family values.  An example of humanity at it’s best and we should never lose sight of these words family values and to love, care and cherish those closest to us, mum would like that.

Finally I would like to recite a poem in honour of mum; you could perhaps describe it as a message from mum.

But before doing so, I will say that all week people have been very gracious and generous with their expressions of sympathy, many have commented on Gary and Charlene’s pending arrival and commented you lose a love one, you gain a loved one.  Although very touching I do not think that we can ever lose a loved one.  Eileen’s legacy will always be with us and I am proud to say that Ben Gilfillan has the middle name Forsyth, Eileen’s maiden name – she missed the opportunity of meeting Ben but in time I am sure that young Ben will be honoured and privileged to have his great gran’s maiden name, Forsyth.

Thank you