A Northern Irish man who collapsed and died after being bitten by an insect in Manila will be buried tomorrow.
Paul Gallagher, aged 46, was just days away from starting a new life in his native Londonderry when the tragedy occured on December 4.
His family told the Belfast Telegraph that they were delighted that he had planned to return to set up home in his native Derry.
In a tragic twist of fate, his body will be returned to his family on the very day he was due to arrive back home.
His friend Gillian Nesbitt described him as a gentleman who would be sorely missed.
“Paul was living in the Philippines but he was meant to come home for good this week,” she said. “It is just so tragic.
“He was bitten by an insect when he was in the Philippines and they think he might have taken an allergic reaction to that, gone into cardiac arrest in hospital and died.
“It’s shocking. You never think that if you get bitten by an insect that this might happen to you.
“It is so hard to believe that he is gone, it is shocking.
“Paul was a really good friend. I’ve known him for 20 years. He was a very loyal and kind person.
“He loved his family so much, he was so close to them and was always very protective of them. And he always looked after me. He was such a good person, it’s just such a shock that he is gone.
“He will be so badly missed.”
Mr Gallagher’s body was due to be flown back from the Philippines yesterday (December 17) and his funeral takes place at the family’s church, St Mary’s in Ardmore, at 11am tomorrow.
He is survived by his parents Dessie and Marie, his brother Mark, his sister Maire and his nephews and niece Callum, Emma and Christopher.
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