Northern Ireland news

Funeral of Ethan McCourt (6) hears how his organs have given others a 'new lease of life'

Ethan McCourt died in hospital on Saturday afternoon

MOURNERS at the funeral of a six-year-old child who died following a road crash in Co Derry have heard how his organs were donated to give others a "new lease of life".

Family and friends of Ethan McCourt from Toomebridge today gathered to say the final farewells to the young child, who was described as a "lively, inquisitive boy".

Parish priest Monsignor Andrew Dolan told mourners at Church of St Mary’s in Bellaghy that his heartbroken family had donated his organs and six people had "benefited".

Ethan died in hospital on Saturday after he was injured in a crash at the Castledawson Road roundabout last Monday.

Three other people were taken to hospital following the collision, including his father Declan, who remains in hospital.

Monsignor Dolan said Ethan should have been looking forward to the start of his school holidays "when children are starting to slow down and look forward to the holidays - but Ethan’s were spent in intensive care".

"Despite Ethan’s short life he achieved more than most of us will ever achieve as before his passing Ethan’s organs were retrieved and as a consequence six different people’s lives, please God, have been given a new lease of life," he said.

He added that "in a sense Ethan will continue to live on through these lives".

The priest said that Ethan, a pupil at St Mary’s Primary School in Bellaghy, would "always be remembered as the lively, inquisitive boy and never grow old".

Ethan is survived by his parents Oonagh and Declan and wider family circle.

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