Northern Ireland news

Two friends killed in Co Louth road crash were from Co Down

Two men died in the crash on the Newry Road near Carlingford. Picture by RTÉ

TWO friends killed in a road crash in Co Louth were from Co Down.

The men, both in their 20s, were named locally last night as Martin Patterson from Bryansford and Shane McAnallen from Castlewellan.

The incident happened just outside Carlingford on the R173 Newry Road shortly after 12.30am yesterday.

It is understood that gardaí had attempted to stop their car prior to the collision. Both men were pronounced dead at the scene.

Their bodies were taken to Louth County Hospital in Dundalk for post-mortem examinations.

A spokesperson for the Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission (GSOC) last night said the incident "is currently under examination by GSOC officials, who have visited the scene of the crash".

In a Facebook post from Downpatrick Parish, condolences were sent following the deaths of the two men.

It also offered its sympathies to the families of the three teenagers who died in the Cookstown tragedy as well as relatives of Ruth Maguire, whose body was recovered from the water in Co Louth.

"A sad weekend for many families - with the recent local tragedies - please keep the friends and families of Ruth Maguire, Marty Patterson & Shane McAnallen in your prayers," it said.

"We also remember in our prayers the families and friends of the three young people who tragically lost their lives in Cookstown. May they rest in peace."

Many friends have described the deaths of the two men as "heartbreaking", while others said it was "such a shock".

Mr Patterson worked for Downpatrick groundworks firm C&P Flanagan Contracts.

His boss, Paul Flanagan, told Belfast Live: "Martin was a good, straight-forward lad. He was in the lorry with me just there on Saturday and we're all very shaken up to hear what's happened.

"He only started with us about a month ago as ground worker and he was a good, jolly lad. He was very well liked and got on well with all the lads who work here.

"We're very annoyed about what's happened, and our thoughts are with his whole family, as well as with the family of the other young man who died."

Sinn Féin councillor Willie Clarke said their deaths had shocked the community.

"This news has numbed the community and my deepest condolences go to the families of both young men," he said.

"They were friends for all their lives and had a shared interest in cars. I know the families are preparing to bring the remains home.

"It is such a tragedy on a St Patrick's Bank Holiday weekend."

A man who died after he was struck by a car in Co Antrim has also been named as 28-year-old Diarmuid McFall.

Mr McFall was walking near a service station on Moneynick Road in Toome when he was hit by a car on Sunday shortly before 8.20pm.

Police said he was from the local area and have appealed for witnesses.

Meanwhile, a man has died and 11 others have been injured following a road crash in Co Westmeath yesterday.

Five cars were involved in the collision on the M6 near Kilbeggan.

The fatality, a man in his 60s, was driving one of the cars. The eleven people injured were taken to hospitals in Mullingar and Tullamore for treatment.

Gardaí said one passenger suffered serious injuries in the crash and was taken to Beaumont Hospital in Dublin.

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