Ronan Keating and Boyzone bandmates stayed with Stephen Gately's coffin night before funeral
Ronan Keating has revealed he and his fellow Boyzone bandmates slept in the church with Stephen Gately the night before the tragic star’s funeral.
Gately died unexpectedly in 2009 and Keating spoke recently to mark the anniversary of his pal’s death and told of the "beautiful, amazing experience" he and Keith Duffy, Shane Lynch and Mikey Graham shared.
Keating told Sky News: "The four of us decided to stay with him on the Friday night in the church.
Read more: Boyzone's Shane Lynch splits from wife under pressure of lockdown
"All of us are so happy that we did it. It was our last night together as a five piece, our last real night together.
"We cried and we laughed and we could hear him telling us jokes and we could hear him answering back.
"We didn't get much sleep, a little bit, but that's not what it was about, it was just about spending time with Steo and we knew Steo well; he didn't like the dark, he didn't like being on his own.
"Yes, we had a nice time, the five of us. We toasted and we had a drink and it was our way of saying goodbye, it was our way of dealing with it."
Saturday (10 October) marked 11 years since Gately was found dead at his holiday home in Mallorca following an undiagnosed congenital heart defect.
Keating, Lynch, Duffy and Graham all took to social media to mark the anniversary.
Read more: Ronan Keating and wife Storm welcome baby daughter to family
Keating posted an image of him and Gately on Instagram with the caption: “This was us as I remember and always want to. 11 years has zipped by and it’s still as hard as ever to not have you in all our lives.
“Miss you brother. Miss your laugh miss your sense of humour. Miss your strops miss your high kicks miss the bones of ya. I know you are still smiling straw balls. God Bless.”
This was us as I remember and always want to. 11 years has zipped by and it’s still as hard as ever to not have you in all our lives. Miss you brother. Miss your laugh miss your sense of humour. Miss your strops miss your high kicks miss the bones of ya. I know you are still smiling straw balls. God Bless 🖤 🦋 #BeliveinME 😂
A post shared by Ronan Keating (@rokeating) on
Graham posted an image with the words “Never stop missing ya kid” while Lynch posted a photo of him and Gately with the simple caption “brother”.
Duffy also posted an image of him and Gately, writing: “11 years an Angel ! Love ya miss ya.”
Watch: Ronan Keating on listening to songs written for Stephen Gately