WARM and moving tributes have been paid to the late Thomas Healy, the popular teenager who lost his life in a road collision on Ross Road, Killarney in the early hours of Tuesday morning.
The 14-year-old will be laid to rest tomorrow following Requiem Mass in his local parish church where the close-knit community of the Gap of Dunloe and Beaufort will rally around and comfort his family following the devastating tragedy.
Beaufort GAA Club, for whom Thomas was a talented young player, said the entire GAA community was shocked and saddened at his tragic passing and he will be deeply missed by all who knew him.
“Thomas was a very promising young player and most recently was playing for both our under 15s and under 17s. He was always full of energy and played with his heart on his sleeve,” the club said.
“As a club we extend our deepest sympathy to Julie, Ger, Jack, Danny and Michael and to the many friends that Thomas had throughout our club”.
A book of condolences for Thomas was opened in the clubhouse yesterday and it will be available to sign this Friday night from 7.00pm to 9.00pm.
Beaufort GAA Club said it would also offer prayers for the recovery of the other teenager who was injured in the dreadful collision.
Cullina National School in Beaufort, where Thomas was a pupil for eight years, said the community was truly shocked and saddened to learn the dreadful news.
“Thomas had an amazing singing voice and was selected as a lead vocalist on our CD Let it Be.
“He was a star footballer on our school team and he was hugely popular with pupils and staff alike. Thomas will be greatly missed by us all,” the school said in a statement sending condolences to his family.
Intermediate School Killorglin, where Thomas was a student, said: “All at the ISK are deeply shocked and saddened at the sudden and tragic death of student Thomas Healy. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family, friends, classmates and all who knew Thomas”.
Killarney Athletic AFC said members were shocked and saddened to learn of the sudden death of their popular young star who played at under 15 and under 16 level.
“Thomas always represented the Blues with great heart, enthusiasm, determination and respect,” the club said.
“To his biggest fans, mom Julie, dad Ger, brothers Jack, Danny and Michael and the extended family, we send you caring thoughts and loving hugs. Those we love live in our hearts forever,” the club said.
Killarney Celtic FC also paid tribute to Thomas and extended the sympathy of its members to the Healy family.
“On the field we are opponents but off the field we are all members of the one great soccer family. At Killarney Celtic we are deeply saddened at the death of Thomas Healy who was a player with our neighbours Killarney Athletic.
“To his parents Julie and Ger, who have many friends at Celtic, his brothers and extended family, his wide circle of friends and his teammates at Killarney Athletic, we send our deepest sympathies. You will all be in our thoughts and prayers during this very sad time,” the club said.
Kate Kearney’s Cottage in the Gap of Dunloe, where Thomas was helping out during the summer holidays, described him as “a wonderful young man”.
“All of the Healy men have helped us here in Kate’s, in one form or another, down through the years. Ger and Jack have wowed many guests with their musical talents while Danny and Mike have had summer jobs in the kitchen.
“While mom Julie has never worked here, she is an integral part of the community and a great friend and customer. They are part of the extended Kate’s family. We mourn with them today. Rest in peace Thomas,” the restaurant bar and craft shop team said on Facebook.
In the Dáil, Deputy Danny-Healy-Rae expressed sympathy to the families of Thomas Healy and James O’Connor who lost his life in a motorcycle accident in Listry on Monday night.
“My thoughts go out to the families that have been left behind. Their lives will never again be the same. May God give them the strength to carry on and continue with their lives in the best way that they can,” said the Kerry TFD who is related to the Healy family.
“It reminds us of what true loss is. I hope that the little boy who is very hurt recovers,” he added.
The Requiem Mass for Thomas will take place in St Mary’s Church, Beaufort this Saturday at 11.00am followed by burial in Churchtown Cemetery.
In accordance with Government and HSE guidelines, and in the interest of public health, the funeral will be private but it will be live-streamed on the Beaufort Parish Facebook page.
The funeral cortege will be leaving the Healy family home on Saturday morning at 10.10am to arrive at St Mary’s Church, Beaufort for 10.45am and the public has been asked to please observe social distancing guidelines.