‘I lost my only son. I see everything as being over’

Shane O'Farrell: Died in 2011 after being hit by a car.

A mother who lost her only son in a hit-and-run accident and sued the driver for nervous shock has settled her action at the High Court.

Lucia O’Farrell’s son Shane was knocked down as he cycled near his home at Carrickmacross, Co Monaghan.

Shane, aged 23, had just handed in his dissertation for his master’s in law at Trinity College Dublin and was training for a triathlon.

Mrs O’Farrell had sued the driver of the car, Zigimantas Gridziuska, aged 39, for nervous shock as a result of the accident in August 2011.

She told the High Court the joy is gone out of her life since her son died. “I relive every minute of the day that it happened. I will never move on. My life is over.”

The 57-year-old mother of three said she had a special bond with her only son and has not changed anything in his room since his death.

“His laptop is where he left it; his jeans that he took off still on the bed. The guitar gathers dust. I have not touched anything in his room , you think maybe he could just come back.”

She added: “My son is dead and is not coming home. I lost my only son. Now I see everything as being over. There is no fixing it.”

Mrs O’Farrell said she had to give up her job as a psychiatric nurse due to ill health after the accident and became quite isolated.

Mr Gridziuska, who lived in Carrickmacross at the time, was given a suspended sentence of eight months on condition that he leave the country.

In the High Court, Mrs O’Farrell sued for nervous shock claiming since the accident she has suffered post-traumatic stress disorder and a severe grief reaction including flashbacks and nightmares.

Yesterday, Gabriel Gavigan said the case had been settled and could be struck out. The terms of the settlement are confidential.


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