Three road deaths plunge communities into mourning

Steven Sunstrum, from the Cregagh estate in the south-east of the city, died on Saturday morning from injuries sustained in a crash on Wednesday night
Andrew Madden

THREE communities have been plunged into mourning following deaths on the roads over the weekend.

On Saturday, 19-year-old Steven Sunstrum died from injuries sustained in a crash in east Belfast on Wednesday night.

The collision happened at the junction of the Castlereagh and Upper Knockbreda roads at around 9.45pm on Wednesday.

Mr Sunstrum was from the Cregagh estate in the the south-east of the city and was affectionately known as 'Giggles' to his friends.

Friends of the former Breda Academy pupil took to social media to offer their condolences.

"Struggled to even find words, such a good friend to all, I will never forget you or how many times your smile was able to light up a room, forever young Giggles," one wrote.

"Words can't describe how heart broken everyone is over the passing of Steven, a true gentleman," said another.

"You lit up the room with your infectious smile no one will ever forget that, heart goes out to the Sunstrum/Coates family, I can't imagine the pain they are going through right now. He will live on in the hearts of everyone."

Mr Sunstrum's soccer jersey, emblazoned with his nickname and the estate were he lived and grew up

On Saturday night, a male motorcyclist in his 40's, who had not been named last night, died following a crash on the Tandragee Road in Newry.

A female pillion passenger was also taken to hospital with serious injuries, where she remained last night.

The collision involving the motorcycle and another vehicle occurred close to the junction of Appletree Hill and was reported to police shortly after 7pm.

The scene of Saturday night's crash on the Tandragee Road in Newry. Picture by

In the early hours of Sunday morning, a pedestrian lost his life after being hit by car in Cookstown.

Stephen Wilkinson, who was from the Ardboe area, died after being involved in a collision with a Ford Focus shortly before 3.30am in the Chapel Street area of the town.

A 26-year-old man driving the car was arrested.

Ulster Unionist councillor for the area, Trevor Wilson, said he was "deeply saddened" by the loss of life and offered his condolences to Mr Wilkinson's family.

Friend's of Mr Wilkinson paid tribute to him on social media, describing him as a "genuinely nice guy".

"I can't believe the news, rest in peace Stephen. Gone far to soon. One of the nicest people I have ever known. Thoughts and prayers go out to the Wilkinson family," one wrote.

The family notice for the young man read: "Stephen R.I.P. Dearly loved son of Sharon and Christopher and much loved brother of Ryan. Sacred Heart of Jesus have mercy on his soul.

"Deeply regretted by his sorrowing mother, father, brother, sister in law Shannon, godson Noah, girlfriend Bronagh, grandparents, uncles, aunts, Cousins and large family circle."

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