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Darren Whelan - over €60,000 has been raised for Kevin Bell Repatriation Trust in memory of Darren Darren Whelan - over €60,000 has been raised for Kevin Bell Repatriation Trust in memory of Darren

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Over €60,000 raised for Kevin Bell Repatriation Trust in memory of Darren Whelan

Darren Whelan – over €60,000 has been raised for Kevin Bell Repatriation Trust in memory of Darren

 

Over €60,000 raised for Kevin Bell Repatriation Trust in memory of Darren Whelan

By I Love Limerick Correspondent Tara Byrne

The family of Limerick’s late Darren Whelan have raised a huge sum of €60,000 for the Kevin Bell Repatriation Trust in memory of their son who died tragically in an accident while on holiday in Greece last week.

Darren, from the parish of Kildimo-Pallaskenry, had studied civil engineering at Limerick Institute of Technology and had travelled to the Greek island with friends to celebrate graduating from college. He sustained fatal injuries after falling from a height.

Martina Leonard who set up the GoFundMe page said, “As many of you will know Darren was holidaying in Greece with friends when he sadly lost his life in an accident. Darren was a kind, caring, fun-loving young man, with the brightest of futures ahead of him. In his short 23 years, he touched the lives of everyone he met with his positive energy and friendly nature”.

A popular GAA player, Darren is the son of Eddie and Geraldine and has two brothers Gavin and Eamon. He grew up in Loughill but later moved to Kildimo. Hurler Kyle Hayes dedicated his performance in Sunday’s Munster final to his friend Darren. The 23-year-old played hurling for Kildimo-Pallaskenry, the same club as Hayes.

The Kevin Bell Repatriation Trust aims to alleviate the financial hardship of bereaved families repatriating the body (bodies) of loved one(s) who have died abroad in sudden or tragic circumstances back to Ireland.

The family chose the Kevin Bell Repatriation Trust in memory of Darren. Martina said, “We are fortunate to have the support of the Kevin Bell Repatriation Trust at this time. They are working tirelessly to bring Darren home to his family and friends. We would be lost without their help, compassion and professionalism at this time”.

Darren was laid to rest at Loughill Cemetery following a private funeral Mass in St. Joseph’s Church, Kildimo last Monday afternoon.

Darren’s family would appreciate any donations you could make to this vital charity. Martina said, “Our sad situation today, will, unfortunately, be some other poor families situation tomorrow and we wish all support to be available to other families in need”.

One of many heartbroken at the news was close friend, Cllr Dan McSweeney who said, “As we go through life we learn that what matters most are the friends we make along the way. I was privileged to know Darren from our school days,“ he said in tribute. 

“He had all the qualities we appreciate in a friend: he was loyal, honest, caring and great fun. We will miss him but we know he will influence our lives in the years to come,” Cllr McSweeney said. Offering sincere condolences to the family, he said in solidarity: “Our great memories will sustain us into the future.” 

To donate to the GoFundMe page go HERE 

For more remembrance stories go HERE 

Richard is a presenter, producer, songwriter and actor. He was named the Limerick Person of the Year (2011) and won an online award at the Metro Éireann Media and Multicultural Awards (2011) for promoting multi-culturalism online. Richard says that the ilovelimerick.com concept is very much a community driven project that aims to document life in Limerick. So, that in 20 years time people can look back and remember the events that were making the headlines.

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