Teenage Co Down crash victim ‘lived life to the fullest’

Christopher Hillis died at the scene of the crash between Dromara and Kinallen
Christopher Hillis died at the scene of the crash between Dromara and Kinallen

The 18-year-old man killed at the weekend in a road accident in Co Down was a “popular young man from a highly respected family”.

Christopher Hillis died after the car in which he was a back-seat passenger was involved in a one-vehicle collision on the Banbridge Road, between Dromara and Kinallen shortly after 12.30am on Saturday.

The wreckage of the car is taken away from the scene of the crash on Saturday

The wreckage of the car is taken away from the scene of the crash on Saturday

Police say there were five teenages males in the car, including Mr Hillis who died at the scene.

Another of the passengers sustained serious injuries according to the police.

Mr Hillis’s funeral is due to take place on Monday at 2pm in Third Rathfriland Presbyterian Church followed by burial in the adjoining churchyard.

In his funeral notice he is described as the “eldest darling son of Andrew and Judith and loving brother of Aimee and Alyx, adored grandson of Eric and Lottie Harbinson and Roy and the late Evelyn Hillis”.

His family has asked for donations in lieu of flowers to be made to the Air Ambulance c/o JG Bullick Funeral Directors in Rathfriland.

Ulster Unionist councillor for Rathfriland, Alderman Elizabeth Ingram BEM, knows the Hillis family.

She said: “Christopher was born and grew up and attended the local schools in Rathfriland.

“He was a popular young man with many friends and came from a highly respected family.”

She added: “It is to his family and friends I would like to pass on my deep and heartfelt sympathy at the tragic passing of one so dear to them.”

The councillor extended her best wishes to the other young people involved in the tragic accident.

A friend of Christopher’s – Rebekah Dunne – posted on Facebook: “Still can’t get over the news, taken far too young! You definitely did live life to the fullest. Rest in peace, party hard up there bud.”

Laura Phillips, a former student at Rathfriland High School, said of Mr Hillis: “Always took the time to speak to everyone and would have done anything to help someone out. He will truly be missed by a lot of people.”