A Co Antrim village is in shock after the sudden death of a seven-year-old girl with “a bright future ahead of her”.
Bronagh Kinney, a pupil at Glenann Primary School and a player for Cushendall Camogie Club, died from suspected meningitis on Monday.
The seven-year-old, described as “a lovely, caring child”, died in her mother Gina’s arms at Royal Victoria Children’s Hospital, according to her funeral notice.
The popular Cushendall schoolgirl, one of five brothers and sisters, will be laid to rest on Wednesday.
Francis Close, principal at Glenann PS, said: “Glenann Primary School is deeply saddened and shocked by the sudden death of our precious Primary Four pupil Bronagh.
“She was a lovely, caring child, popular with everyone within the school.
“Her passing will leave a huge void in her family, her school and her local community.
“We appreciate all the support given to us by our parents, our local community, CCMS and the Education Authority at this difficult time.
“Bronagh will be sorely missed by her classmates and the whole school community.”
Parish priest Father Luke McWilliams said: “She was very well thought of at her school.
“She was just a lovely wee girl with a bright future ahead of her.
“She was held in high regard by her classmates, who are terribly distraught about her death.”
He added: “She was preparing to make her first Holy Communion and was very happy about that.”
Fr McWilliams said the close-knit community in Cushendall is giving the Kinney family all the support they can.
Bronagh’s youth club also offered its condolences, saying on Facebook: “The committee, staff and members of The Glens Youth Club are saddened to learn of the tragic passing of our junior member Bronagh Kinney RIP.
“The thoughts and prayers of everyone at The Glens Youth Club are with ... the entire Kinney family at this sad time.”
Her funeral takes place on Wednesday from her grandparents’ home in Carnlough to St Mary’s Church, Cushendall for 11am Requiem Mass.
She will be buried in the adjoining cemetery.
Bronagh was the daughter of Shane and Gina and sister of Michael, Clodagh, Liam and Niall.