Popular Melanie was ‘a mammy, fighter and a wonderful person’

By Maurice Garvey

TRIBUTES poured in last week for Melanie Hill Rutherford (41), the wife of former League of Ireland legend Mark Rutherford.

Ms Hill Rutherford, a mother of four, sadly passed away on May 21 following a long battle with cancer.

Mark Rutherford 07 compressor

Balloons are released outside the church

On Monday May 25 at St Patrick’s Catholic Church in Lucan, members of Lucan United – for whom Mark is a coach – formed a guard of honour.

Due to social distancing guidelines, neighbours and friends of the family paid their respects along the roads from the church to Newlands Cross Cemetery.

Melanie and Mark live in the Moyglass area and have four kids.

 A Moyglass resident said they are a “very popular family in the area.”

“We wanted to show community solidarity at this difficult time with the family,” he said.

Messages of support were posted online by numerous clubs Mark played for in his career, including St Patrick’s Athletic, Shamrock Rovers and Bohemians FC.

The Former Players Association sent their deepest sympathies “to our friend Mark Rutherford and his family over the passing of his wife Melanie.”

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Melanie Hill Rutherford

Lucan Utd, posted a personal message on their social media from Mark Rutherford, thanking the community for their support.

Mark said: “I’ve been inundated with so many touching kind hearted messages of condolences for my late wife Melanie, who passed away. On behalf of me, my four young children (Naoise, Holly, Eabha, Rian) and Melanie’s family, I’d like to thank you all from the deepest part of my heart. Your messages will help with the healing.”

TD Gino Kenny met Melanie in December 2016 on the night his Cannabis for Medical Use Bill was passed in the Dáil.

“Melanie took part in a number of press conferences we had on the issue and was a speaker at the Medical Cannabis Symposium in February 2017,” said Deputy Kenny.

“That day she was brilliant, insightful and explained the benefits she was getting from medical cannabis to reduce her pain. She was a Mammy, fighter and a wonderful person.”

A message on RIP.ie said: “Melanie Hill Rutherford, Lucan, and formerly of Ballincollig, Co Cork, passed away peacefully, surrounded by her loving family, after a long illness courageously and bravely borne.

“Beloved wife of Mark, adored mommy of Naoise, Holly, Eabha and Rian, dearly beloved daughter of Seán and May Hill.”

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