TRIBUTES have poured in for the two little boys found dead just hours after a child safety alert had been issued.
Eoghan (10) and his little brother Ruairi (5) were found dead in a car just outside Westport just before 3pm today.
This evening they were described as their mother Kathleen’s “pride and joy”.
“Eoghan and Ruairi. Her pride and joy – two lovely little lads who went to the local primary school in Ballinkillen,” Fr Declan Foley told the Irish Independent.
“They were extremely popular and very involved in the local community
“The two lads were into sports in a big way. They were part of the Ballinkill hurling club and took part in soccer and GAA.
“Both were sports fanatics and were extremely involved in all aspects of community life,” Fr Foley said.
“They were lovely boys with many interests. They were extremely involved in the local GAA club and they were much respected and loved by everybody
“As you can imagine, the impact on the family is incredible. Our prayers and good wishes are with them at this time,” Fr Foley told the Irish Independent.
Fr Foley was in the family home when the news was broken to their mother Kathleen.
He was in the house early this morning after the alarm about the two boys was raised overnight.
“I happened to be there this afternoon when the news through came confirming that the two lads had died.
“Thank heavens the family were there when the news hit – there were brother and sisters and in-laws in the house as well as her parents.”
Fr Foley said no words could describe the devastation of the news.
“Nonetheless it was as if an earthquake struck the house. The grief was immeasurable – more than words can describe.
“It was a terrible shock to myself. I knew the family and the two young lads well.”
Fr Foley said Kathleen met husband Sanjeev in Dublin while working as a nurse.
They married and when they started their family, they built a house in Kathleen’s Ballinkill close to her parents’ home.
The family were well known in the local community, and well-respected.
The boys were last seen with their father Sanjeev close to their home last night at 6.30pm.
An alert was issued though the Child Rescue Ireland system today before 2pm.
However, the alert was cancelled following the discovery of the two boys’ bodies.