President of Ireland leads tributes to Cranberries lead singer after sudden unexplained death in London
The President of Ireland Michael D Higgins led tributes to the former lead singer of The Cranberries Dolores O’Riordan who died suddenly in London on Monday, aged just 46.
She leaves behind three children Taylor, Molly and Dakota. Ms O’Riordan, from Limerick, had been in London for a short recording sessions.
The Met Police said they were called to a hotel in Park Lane shortly after 9.00 am on Monday morning, she was pronounced dead at the scene.
In a statement issued late Monday her publicist said no further details were available at the time and that her grieving family had requested privacy.
“Family members are devastated to hear the breaking news and have requested privacy at this very difficult time.”
Ms O’Riordan, a native of Ballybricken, shot to global fame in her early 20s during the 1990s as lead singer of The Cranberries. Hits like Zombie, Linger and Dreams helped them sell more than 40 million records worldwide.
The group released five original albums before stopping in 2003 and resuming in 2009. During that break Ms O’Riordan released two solo albums.
The Cranberries released the acoustic album in 2017 and had been due to tour Europe and North America but the tour was cut short because O’Riordan was suffering from back problems.
Canon Liam McNamara, who presided over her marriage to Don Burton in 1994 at Holycross, knew her as she was growing up in Ballybricken in Limerick. He said he was shocked to hear of her death and that everybody who knew her had loved her.
“My heart goes out to the family. Dolores was their pride and joy. We all loved her very, very much. She got on well all the way through her life. I was very disappointed to hear today that she has left us so early in life. “Her family did so much for her and supported her all the way through.”
That marriage ended in 2014. Ms O’Riordan went public some years ago about her fight with depression which she said was especially difficult for her after her father Terence died in 2011 after a long battle with cancer.
“There have been times when I’ve struggled. The death of my father and mother-in-law was very hard. Looking back, I think depression, whatever the cause, is one of the worst things to go through,” she told reporters.
“Then again, I’ve also had a lot of joy in my life, especially with my children. You get ups as well as downs. Sure isn’t that what life’s all about?”
In another interview she said the best thing about her life was being a mother: “The best time in my life was the years spent at home with my family. I love being a mum. My kids don’t see me as a famous person, or have any kind of expectation; I’m just their mum.”
In 2014, the same year her marriage ended, Ms O’Riordan was accused of assaulting three police officers and a flight attendant during a flight from New York to Ireland. She pleaded guilty and was fined 6,000 euros ($6,600).
She last posted a picture of herself with her cat on Twitter on 4 January with the caption: ‘Bye bye Gio. We’re off to Ireland.’ Her band had recently played in South America, and she tweeted pictures of fans in Lima, Peru in December.