Hundreds pay tribute to tragic schoolboy John Irwin

Desperately sad scenes as John Irwin's coffin is carried from the church.
Desperately sad scenes as John Irwin's coffin is carried from the church.

Hundreds of people have attended a funeral service for John Irwin, the 16-year-old schoolboy from Co Armagh who died suddenly earlier this week.

Staff and pupils from John’s school, City of Armagh High School, were among the mourners at St John’ Parish Church, Middletown on Saturday afternoon.

DUP representative William Irwin attended the funeral service.

DUP representative William Irwin attended the funeral service.

John from Tynan, collapsed at school on Tuesday, and died several hours later.

School principal David Livingstone revealed on Friday that special assemblies have been held to help pupils come to terms with the tragedy.

“John was a popular young man and was held in the highest regard by his teachers and fellow pupils alike. He will be greatly missed by all, particularly those within his form class. John possessed many fine qualities. Since his passing words which have been used to describe him include patient, kind, courteous and polite.

“He always saw the good in others and was keen to help and support those who were in difficulty. He worked extremely hard at every task he undertook. His qualities led to John being appointed Prefect, a role which he approached with enthusiasm. John was actively involved in making plans for his future, hoping to pursue a career in butchery alongside his farming activities.”

Pupils from City of Armagh High School look on as John Irwin's funeral is carried to St. John's Parish Church, Middletown

Pupils from City of Armagh High School look on as John Irwin's funeral is carried to St. John's Parish Church, Middletown

John’s funeral was held a week on from an accident that ultimately took the life of a former City of Armagh High School head girl, Lesley-Ann McCarragher. She was struck by a car while out running and died in hospital last Sunday.

Staff and pupils from City of Armagh High School arrive for the funeral service of John Irwin at St. John's Parish Church, Middletown.

Staff and pupils from City of Armagh High School arrive for the funeral service of John Irwin at St. John's Parish Church, Middletown.

We at City of Armagh High School mourn the sudden death of John Irwin, one of our year 12 pupils. John was a much loved and highly respected member of our school community who will be missed by all of us.

We are deeply saddened by this great loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with Johns family at this tragic time, we extend to them our sincerest sympathy and support.

We at City of Armagh High School mourn the sudden death of John Irwin, one of our year 12 pupils. John was a much loved and highly respected member of our school community who will be missed by all of us. We are deeply saddened by this great loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with Johns family at this tragic time, we extend to them our sincerest sympathy and support.