Tears and toasts as Boyzone give Ireland's son Stephen Gately a customary farewell


Stephen Gately's mourning Boyzone bandmates gave their late friend a very traditional Irish send-off after his emotional funeral service on Saturday.

Ronan Keating, Mikey Graham (both pictured below)  Keith Duffy and Shane Lynch paid for a £45,000 wake for Stephen's family and friends to give him what the latter described as "the farewell he deserved."

Some 400 friends and family of the 33-year-old singer came together for the 12-hour bash to raise a glass to the late musician.

The wake began at the Four Seasons Hotel at 3.30 pm with a champagne reception, canapés and cocktails, followed by a four-course sit-down meal.


As the night continued, videos of Stephen – who tragically passed away in Majorca last Saturday - were played and stories were told in celebration of his life.

And there were plenty of toasts at the knees-up, which lasted until around 3am.

"The Boyzone guys joined in the toasting and all his close friends and family held up a glass or two for Stephen," one guest said. "It got even more emotional when videos and songs of Stephen's career were played to guests."

"At one point some of the lads were sitting in the corner of the room and they started singing ballads and then swapping funny stories about Stephen," another onlooker added.

"They have been through so much in the past week it was just great to see they found something to smile about."

Guests at the wake included Stephen's parents Martin and Margaret, Elton John's partner David Furnish, the members of fellow Irish boyband Westlife, and Jason Donovan. X Factor judge Louis Walsh, who spoke of his heartache last week, was also there.