Ophelia’s Tragic Cost

Storm Ophelia, which ground Waterford, the South East and the entire State to a halt on Monday, claimed the life of a Cancer Support Co-ordinator outside the West Waterford village of Aglish.
Clare O’Neill died a day short of her 59th birthday after her car was struck by a tree on the R671 road between Aglish and Clashmore, at 11.40am approximately.
Ms O’Neill, a mother of one, had only taken up a new post at the Cuan House Cancer Support Centre in Youghal last May, having previously worked at the ARC Cancer Support facility at Cork’s O’Donovan Rossa Road.
“We are all deeply saddened by the sudden loss of our friend and colleague, Clare O’Neill,” said Ellen Joyce, the Director of Services at Cork ARC Cancer Support House.
“She was a wonderful nurse and a special person who will be missed by the Cork ARC Cancer Support House team, our volunteers and all the people and patients she worked with here (in Cork) and in Youghal. Our thoughts are with her family at this most difficult time.”

Cla're O' Neill who lost her life at Aglish, West waterford

Cla're O' Neill who lost her life at Aglish, West waterford


At the time of the accident, which occurred less than a kilometre from her home, Ms O’Neill had been driving, accompanied by her mother (in her late 70s) when a falling branch breached the car’s windscreen, killing her instantly.
Ms O’Neill was pronounced dead at the scene by the emergency services, while her mother, who suffered non-life threatening injuries, was transferred to University Hospital Waterford (UHW).
The deceased and her family had moved into the Aglish townsland roughly seven years ago, having previously lived in County Cork.
Speaking to journalists, local shopkeeper Richard Hurley described Clare O’Neill as “a very jolly woman. It’s a big shock; it’s a miserable morning, a young woman like that (losing her life) in such a tragic accident”.
Ms O’Neill was one of three fatalities recorded during the worst Irish weather event of the past half-century.
Less than an hour after the Aglish tragedy, 31-year-old Michael Pyke was killed when struck by a falling tree on the Cahir to Ardfinnan Road in South Tipperary while attempting to chainsaw another grounded tree. Mr Pyke was pronounced dead at the scene before his body was taken to South Tipperary General Hospital in Clonmel.
At 2.45pm approximately, Fintan Goss, also in his 30s, married with two children, was killed when the vehicle he was driving reportedly collided with a fallen tree near Dundalk in County Louth.
A conservative estimate suggested that just over 100 trees had fallen in the city and county due to the storm, while electricity outages throughout the county and in parts of the city were still being reported on Tuesday morning, due to fallen power lines

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