Gardaí in fresh appeal for witnesses to tragic road death of young boy

GARDAÍ are appealing for witnesses as they continue their investigation into the tragic death of an eight-year-old boy from West Cork.

Roan Harrington died after apparently falling off his bicycle while out cycling last Sunday evening near his home at Ballydonegan, Allihies.

Roan was supposed to start his first day in second class at Cahermore National School yesterday, and to mark the tragedy classmates held a prayer service for him.

School principal of Cahermore, Paudie O’Sullivan described Roan as a real outdoors boy.

“It’s really very sad. He was involved in everything. He was always good fun, loved animals and being outdoors,” Mr O’Sullivan said.

The accident happened at Ballydonegan, on the main road to Castletownbere and less than a quarter of a mile from Allihies village.

Roan was found by a person living nearby who immediately contacted the emergency services.

He was pronounced dead in an ambulance before it was able to reach Bantry General Hospital.

His devastated mother Margaret Harrington, his father Sesso Villanueva and brothers Euan, 12 and Oran, 10, are being comforted by family and friends.

A Garda spokesman said that a number of tourists would travel the main road between Allihies and Castletownbere and they were hoping to speak to anybody who had seen Roan cycling in the area up to an hour before the accident was reported at 5.15pm.

It is believed Roan died as a result of serious head injuries after falling from his bicycle.

Gardaí said no other vehicle was involved in the accident.

“A forensic collision examination has taken place at the scene and the matter is under investigation,” said the Garda spokesman.

Local county councillor Jerry O’Sullivan extended his sympathy to the Harrington family.

“To think that there is one young lad less in the class is absolutely devastating for the area.

“My sympathies go out to his mother, his father and his extended family.”

Roan’s Spanish-born father, who has been based in Allihies for many years, was out fishing at sea when the tragedy occurred. He has since returned to be with his grieving family. Funeral arrangements have as yet to be finalised.

*Anyone who may have witnessed the accident is asked to contact gardaí in Castletownbere on 027-70002.

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