Northern Ireland news

William Dunlop's mother thanks sons for their 'strength and devoted love'

William Dunlop died during a practice session at the Skerries 100 in Dublin

THE mother of motorcyclist William Dunlop has thanked well-wishers for their support and sympathy following her son's tragic death earlier this month.

The 32-year-old rider was killed in a crash during a practice session at the Skerries 100 in Dublin.

His funeral service was held at Garryduff Presbyterian Church, near his hometown of Ballymoney, Co Antrim, on Wednesday of last week.

The funerals of his father Robert, killed at the North West 200 in 2008, and his uncle Joey, who died while racing in Estonia in 2000, were also held at the same church.

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In a heartfelt statement, his mother Louise thanked well-wishers and her other sons, Daniel and Michael, for "their strength and the devoted love they have shown to their mother."

"I thank you all sincerely for your sympathy shown for my son William and I am sorry that many of you hadn't time to grieve or get to say your goodbyes," the statement read.

"I would like to thank everyone in our time of sorrow for their prayers, flowers, cards, messages, refreshments and donations you so kindly sent.

"We are greatly appreciative of all your help throughout those final few days with William and we will thank everyone personally."

The burial of road racing champion William Dunlop takes place at Garryduff Presbyterian Church, Ballymoney

William Dunlop is survived by his pregnant partner Janine and their young daughter Ella.

"A sincere thank you to William's partner Janine and the lovely Brolly family for their loving support and to William and Janine's daughter Ella for her little hugs, and special thanks to my own mother and family for their great support," Mrs Dunlop wrote.

"If I have sadly overlooked anyone, it wasn't intentional as there were so many of you who made the sad occasion pass much smoother for us."

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