Two young people who lost their lives in a horrific road crash in the early hours of Sunday morning will be laid to rest following funerals today and tomorrow.
Conall McAleer and Shiva Devine, who both lived in Co Fermanagh, died after the car they were in crashed into a wall in Bundoran, Co Donegal at around 3.25am on Sunday.
There were six people in the car at the time. A woman in her 20s was also left in a critical condition, and was transferred from hospital in Sligo to Beaumont Hospital in Dublin. She was fighting for her life last night.
A further two passengers, both men aged in their mid 20s, were also left with what police in the Republic of Ireland described as “serious” injuries.
A man in his 20s was arrested after turning himself into police at Ballyshannon Garda station following the crash but was later released.
Mr McAleer, who lived on the Boa Island Road in Co Fermanagh, was described by friends as a “gentleman”.
Ms Devine, a 20-year-old mother who lived in Belleek in Co Fermanagh but who was originally from Co Donegal, was described as “such a sweet girl” by a friend, while a cousin said: “We all love you and will miss you so much.”
Mr McAleer’s funeral will take place at St Joseph’s Church in Ederney, Co Donegal at noon tomorrow, with interment afterwards in Edenclaw Cemetery.
Ms Devine’s funeral will take place at St Brigid’s Church in Ballintra, Co Donegal at 11am today with burial afterwards in the adjoining cemetery.
DUP leader Arlene Foster, who represents the Fermanagh area, said: “This is very tragic news, which will shock the community.” She said she was “remembering their families at this difficult time” and “praying that others involved make a full recovery”.
The MP for the area, Sinn Fein’s Michelle Gildernew, said: “I was shocked to hear of this tragic accident in which a man and a woman have died and three others have been injured.
“I want to commend the emergency services for their efforts in the aftermath of this horrible incident.
“I also wish to extend my deepest and heartfelt sympathies to the family and friends of the two young people who died as a result of this tragic accident, especially the young child who has been left without a mother. My thoughts are also with those who are injured and remain in a critical condition in hospital.
“The area of the road where this happened is notorious, especially in difficult driving conditions like this weekend. It is a very dangerous corner and as a result two families will never be the same again.”
She added: “Really the time has come to sort this road and try and ensure that there are no more accidents or fatalities on it.”
Fermanagh and Omagh councillor Raymond Farrell said: “Amidst carnage, wreckage and broken bodies there are the broken and distressed hearts of the families of everyone concerned. Our hearts and our prayers go out to everyone involved.”