Fr Mark O’Hagan, parish priest of St Patrick’s parish, Dundalk, has said it was the frightened faces and crying children that concerned him most on Sunday after a man drove through a crowded graveyard.
The priest had been on a podium in the graveyard when he heard screaming and shouting and someone shouted at him to call an ambulance.
Fr O’Hagan told RTE radio’s Morning Ireland that there were hundreds of people running and screaming. He jumped off the podium and ran towards the Order of Malta Ambulance where he was told that the gardaí and ambulance had been called.
“The car sped past me, did a wheely and hit some cars and then came back around.
“I put my left hand out to ask him to please stop, to slow down but the driver mounted the kerb coming towards me, I had to jump out of the way. He did a U-turn and then went back the way he came and out of the graveyard.
“I went to the man who was injured and anointed him.
“I asked people to get off the paths and to go further into the graves.
“The guards arrived and the ambulance arrived then the guards asked us to leave the graveyard because it was now a crime scene.”
Fr O’Hagan said he had heard that the man injured had been moved to Beaumont hospital with serious head injuries.
“It was very frightening, people were in disbelief at what was going on. My concern was to make sure that people were safe. There were children crying, people with frightened faces.
“My concern was that no one else was hurt that everybody else was safe.”