‘Beautiful’ toddler, 1, killed after walking out of holiday home and hit by Jeep
A toddler who was killed after walking out of a holiday home and being hit by a Jeep has been named locally.
Brandon Thomas Byrne, aged just 21 months, was hit by the vehicle near the village of Ballinagare in Ireland’s Co Roscommon at around 9am on Friday.
It was understood the tot and his parents were on holiday in Ireland and were staying with family members when the incident happened.
Floral tributes and pictures of the toddler have been left at the scene after the devastating tragedy.
Posting online, his heartbroken dad Andrew wrote: “He was my darling son, love you always til the end of time.”
Brandon will be taken to the family home in Clonsilla this evening from 6pm, before being brought for Mass of the Angels at the Church of St. Philip the Apostle, Mountview, Clonsilla at 10am tomorrow.
He will then be laid to rest in Mulhuddart Cemetery.
His funeral notice described him as “the most beautiful little light and adorable son”.
“Brandon Thomas Byrne, Clonsilla, Dublin 15, aged 21 months, passed peacefully surrounded by his family who love and cherish him, 19th August 2022,” it read.
“Brandon, the most beautiful little light and adorable son of Louise Kehir and Andrew Byrne and cherished grandson of James, Noelene and Fran; Predeceased by his grandmother Margaret and aunt Siobhán.
“Sadly missed by his heartbroken parents, grandparents, his uncles Richard and Mark, relatives, friends and neighbours.”
The child had left his bed and wandered out of the house on his own while his parents were still asleep.
It’s thought the collision happened when a driver didn’t see the child as he entered the area near to where the toddler had been staying.
He then immediately alerted the residents of the nearby house after he realised what had happened.
They soon noticed the child wasn’t in bed or inside the house, and the boy was treated at the scene of the accident by emergency services.
However, despite their best efforts, he was later pronounced dead.
A source told the Irish Daily Mail at the weekend: “They were a couple from the UK who were staying at a family member’s house, in a very rural area about two miles outside Ballinagare.
“A neighbour who owns fields beside them was turning into his land when he noticed a bump. When he got out of his Jeep and saw the toddler he ran straight to the house and alerted the people inside.
“The parents were still in bed at the time and informed him that their son was still asleep. Unfortunately, they soon discovered that this wasn’t the case and that the child must have left the house on his own.”
Local police were investigating the incident over the weekend but confirmed that no foul play was suspected.
No other injuries were reported in the collision.
During Sunday mass in nearby Frenchpark, local priest Fr Neil Devine offered prayers for Brandon after the incident that cocked the local community.
“We pray for the deceased and their loved ones, in particular little Brandon who was involved in a tragic accident in our local area earlier this week,” he told the Irish Sun.
Another local added: “It’s an absolutely terrible tragedy, we all still can’t believe it, it really is heartbreaking.
“That poor family will never be the same again.”
In response to the tragedy, Cllr Tom Crosby said: “It’s shocking, I don’t know the family.
“But it’s very sad. It’s a close knit community and they will certainly be there to support the family at this time and through the coming days, weeks and months.
“And I send my condolences on behalf of Roscommon County Council.”
Meanwhile, Cllr Paschal Fitzmaurice added: “I just have sympathy with the family on this tragic incident, it’s an absolutely terrible tragedy.”
Liam Callaghan, Local Fine Gael Cllr, told the Irish Independent that the community has been left shocked by the news.
“There’s widespread grief and shock in the wider community here in the Tulsk-Bellanagare area. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family at this very sad and tragic time,” he said.
“You hear these stories in different areas around the country at different times, but when it comes to your own doorstep the whole reality hits home, and today sadly it has come to our community. I’ve no doubt that the community will rally around the family.”
After the incident, a Gardaí spokesperson said: “The collision occurred shortly after 9am when a Jeep collided with a male infant.
“The infant received treatment at the scene but was later pronounced deceased. His body was then taken to the mortuary at University Hospital Galway where a post-mortem will take place.
“No other injuries were reported.
“A technical examination of the scene by Forensic Collision Investigators has since been completed and a family liaison officer has been appointed to support the family at this time.”