Family prepares to bring home body of son killed in car crash
THE family of a young Irish man killed after his car overturned in a road crash in Australia are preparing to bring his body home for burial.
It is only two months since Alan Durkan (22) returned home to celebrate Christmas with his parents, Andrew and Janet, and his twin brother, James, in their home in Louisburgh, Co Mayo.
News of the tragic road crash reached the family late on Saturday night.
Mr Durkan, who had been working in a vineyard in Penola, more than 300km south east of Adelaide, died on Saturday evening when his car went out of control and rolled over on a dirt road. It is understood the young man died at the scene.
He had only left Louisburgh to emigrate to Australia in March last year.
His family are making arrangements to have his body brought home for burial.
Louisburgh undertaker Peter Sweeney, who is a friend of the Durkan family, said the entire community was devastated.
Mr Sweeney recalled Mr Durkan's visit home to see his family at Christmas. He was described as "especially popular" in the area and would be well known to many people as the Durkans run the Gala supermarket in Louisburgh.
After news spread of the tragedy on Saturday night, parish priest Fr Martin Long led prayers for the dead youth in Louisburgh Church on Sunday morning.
"The congregation was deeply shocked to hear Alan had died," said Austin Francis O'Malley, a Mayo county councillor.