Four days after the tragic death of Michelle Dockery’s 34-year-old fiancé John Dineen, the Downton Abbey actress steeled herself to speak at his funeral in County Cork, Ireland.
“Whether in his work or his personal life John was extremely loyal,” Dockery told mourners gatd at St. James’s Church on Wednesday, according to The Irish Independent.
In addition to speaking at the funeral, which happened to fall the day after Dockery’s 34th birthday and a day before what would have been Dineen’s 35th birthday, Dockery also sang her late fiancé’s favorite song, “The Folks Who Live on the Hill,” the 1937 standard with lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein.
Dockery reportedly shared that she was uncertain about singing but Dineen’s father was “Just as persuasive as his son.”
While Dockery kept her romantic life private throughout her professional ascent, she did make one public reference to Dineen last year: “I have a wonderful man in my life from Ireland. We were introduced by Allen Leech. That’s all you need to know.”
The Irish Independent reports that “Gifts brought to the altar included Mr. Dineen’s favorite childhood toy-a stuffed monkey, a Munster rugby jersey as a symbol of his love of sport, while a tie represented his career successes.” In support of Dineen’s favorite rugby team, Dockery occasionally posted Instagrams cheering on Munster throughout their courtship.
Just last week, Dockery was in the United States promoting the final season of Downton Abbey.
Late last week Dockery is said to have cut her promotional tour short to be with Dineen and his family during his final hours at Marymount Hospice.