THE funerals of two men who died tragically at the weekend are to be held in the same Coleraine church.
On Friday at 2pm the funeral of 20-year-old Christopher Connor will take place in Killowen Parish Church in Coleraine.
And on Christmas Eve 48-year-old Colin McLeister will be laid to rest after a service in the same church.
Earlier this week, a man was charged with unlawfully killing the father-of-three in Portrush.
Mr McLeister, who locals called “a gentle giant”, died at the Playhouse entertainment complex after falling down stairs in the early hours of Saturday morning.
DUP MP for East Londonderry Gregory Campbell said the entire Coleraine community was “numbed and saddened” by the death of the pair who “lived half-a-mile apart”.
Mr Campbell, who visited the McLeister family home, said: “They are shocked at the sudden nature of the death. All the people around Coleraine who know the family are thinking about them at what is a very traumatic time for any family given the circumstances of his death.
“People are just rallying round and are very sympathetic towards the family who are held in high regard in Coleraine.”
Mr Connor, who had been reported missing to the PSNI, was found dead on Monday in the derelict Montague Hotel in Portstewart.
He was last seen in the early hours of Sunday after a night out with a friend. His family and friends had started to leave posters in clubs and pubs in the area appealing for information about him – before his body was located.
The Rev Donard Collins, who will be conducting both funeral services, said Christopher Connor had been a “very industrious young man”.
“His parents are handling a terribly difficult situation well and they are much supported by family, friends and neighbours.”
A PSNI spokesman said a post mortem had been carried out and inquiries into the circumstances of his death were continuing.
Mr Connor is survived by his parents Christopher and Teresa, sister Laura, her fiance David and nephew Charlie.
He will be buried in the churchyard at Killowen Parish Church.