A young girl who lost both of her parents in tragic circumstances is to publish a new book to help children experiencing grief feel less lonely.
Sarah Corbett Lynch, 13 from Limerick, is due to launch her first book ‘Noodle Loses Dad’, which she hopes will help other children find courage to be themselves.
Sarah was just 12-weeks old when she lost her mother Margaret ‘Mags’ Fitzpatrick, who died at the age of 31 from a severe asthma attack.
In 2015, her father Jason Corbett was murdered by her step-mother Molly Martens at their home in North Carolina, when Sarah was eight-years-old.
Sarah and her brother Jack, now 15, then left their home in North Carolina and relocated to Limerick to live with their aunt Tracey, Jason's sister, and her husband David.
Using writing as a way to address her grief, Sarah said she was inspired to finish her book after hearing about the death of Emma Mhic Mhathuna, one of the women at the centre of the cervical cancer controversy.
Emma died at the age of 37 last year, leaving behind a young family.
"They lost their mom," Sarah told RTÉ radio. "That really pushed me to think about other people [in similar circumstances]."
She started writing 'Noodle Loses Dad' outside a friend's house, she added.
I didn't think this would ever come out of it but in the last year I have really pushed for it because I want to be able to help other people, and other children so they feel less lonely.
When asked if she understood the circumstances around her father's death when she was eight, Sarah said: “I didn’t understand it at the time but I knew that if I wanted to know something, I could just ask Tracey and David."
"I didn’t really want to know all the details so I just left it until I was a bit older, and then asked questions. It really helped to be able to write the book and put my feelings out there in different ways.” She adjusted quickly to her new community in Limerick, she added. "I thought it would be a lot harder but everyone was just so welcoming."
"I had some of my friends calling to the door, saying ‘Do you want to come out and play with us?’ so I didn’t feel lonely or anything.”
'Noodle Loses Dad' is the first book in the BoogaWooga' series by Sarah Corbett Lynch. She will be in O’Mahony’s Bookstore in Limerick on Monday December 2 at 6.30pm to launch the series.