Warm tributes to ‘much-loved and gifted’ teenager

Tributes have been paid to a brave Knockcroghery teenager who sadly passed away following illness on Tuesday, 17th of January last, surrounded by his loving family.

16-year-old Matthew O’Brien from Farbreagues was laid to rest following Mass at St. Patrick’s Church in Knockcroghery last Friday.

He was described as “a popular and very pleasant” student at Roscommon Community College, where he played hurling and football and was a member of the school’s successful junior football team last year.

St. Mary’s National School, Knockcroghery said Matthew was “a bright and cheerful young man who adored his siblings and always brought good humour to those around him.

“He was one of the most talented hurlers to represent our school and will always be remembered for his exploits in the County Final in 2018. It is a heartbreaking time for the family and we want them to know that we are here for them and support them through this difficult time”.

Matthew was a passionate member of St. Dominic’s GAA Club, and teammates and mentors, along with Roscommon Community College classmates, accompanied him on his final journey through Knockcroghery last Friday.

St. Dominic’s GAA Club said: “It is with a profound sense of grief and heartbreak we learn of the passing of Matthew, one of our much-loved and gifted minor club players.

“His death will leave a huge void amongst family, teammates, many, many friends and the community at large.

“In Matthew’s all too short life he has left us with a huge legacy of all that is good, both on and off the field of sport. May all of us who mourn his death, cherish his memory, and recognise the worth of his wisdom and love.

“Matthew will be laid to rest in his much-adored number 5 St. Dominic’s hurling jersey. We would like to express our heartfelt sympathy to all Matthew’s family and friends; our thoughts and prayers are with you at this time of immense grief”.

St. John’s Athletic, Tremane Hurling Club and Tremane Gun Club also paid tribute to the teenager.

Cherished eldest son of Richard and Patricia and much-loved brother to Abigail, Isabelle and Rion, Matthew will be sadly missed by his grandparents John and Mary Macklin and Michael and Patsy O’Brien, aunts and uncles, cousins, neighbours, and a wide circle of friends.

The Macklin and O’Brien families acknowledge the kindness and care shown to Matthew during his illness and conveyed their appreciation to everyone for their support at this time.