Father’s tribute to his ‘best buddy’ after death of mum and boy in London

The father of a seven-year-old Irish boy believed killed by his mother before she took her own life in London this week has written of his heartbreak at losing his “best buddy”.

Shane O’Driscoll, from Bray, Co Wicklow, said words could not express his feelings since the death of his son, Oisin, who was found dead at the home he shared with his mother, Mayo native, Sinead Higgins, earlier this week.

Taking to Facebook to thank friends and family for their support, he wrote last night: “Today it became real when I had the first opportunity to hold Oisin and see his little face.

“My best buddy has been taken from this world and taken from all his little friends. He has always been an angel.” He signed off: “Sleep well my little man. Love Dada.”

The couple had split but Mr O’Driscoll, a barrister also based in the UK, had previously posted holiday photos of himself and Oisin in Bray during the summer and it is understood he raised the alarm after learning Oisin had not been to school this week and failing to make contact with Ms Higgins.

A post-mortem examination took place at Fulham Mortuary in London yesterday afternoon and a result is expected shortly but police have said they are not looking for anyone else in connection with the deaths.

Ms Higgins, a registered nurse and medico-legal advisor, from Aughagower, Co Mayo, had tweeted a week ago “the future looks very” followed by a tornado emoji. Acquaintances reported she had been suffering from depression in recent times.

It is believed that Ms Higgins and her son may have been lying dead since the weekend when they were last seen in public.

The tragedy was discovered by police who forced their way into their home in The Fairway, Ruislip, on Wednesday morning.

There were reports in the UK media that Ms Higgins had debt judgements against her and was worried about a rent increase.

A neighbour, who lived nearby, believed Ms Higgins became depressed after breaking up with her boyfriend and father of her child, barrister, Shane O’Driscoll.

Shocked friends of Mr O’Driscoll expressed their devastation, describing Mr O’Driscoll as a wonderful father.

“There is not a heart in Bray that you beautiful baby boy hasn’t touched this week,” wrote one friend.

Originally from Bray, Co Wicklow, he worked for a software company and, lived a short distance away from Ms Higgins and their son in London.

Mr O’Driscoll doted on his little boy. He had posted numerous photographs of his son in happier times on his Facebook page. Details of the funeral arrangements had not yet been finalised yesterday.

Ms Higgins’s father, Thomas, a farmer and fencing contractor, died two years ago. The family is well known to the Taoiseach, Enda Kenny.

The Samaritans can be contacted by phone 116123 or by email jo@samaritans.org.

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