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Family appeal for privacy in tragic death of Fionn (5)

THE family of a five-year-old boy who was killed when a heavy fireplace toppled on to him as he played in the sitting room have said they are "devastated".

They have appealed for privacy so that they can support Fionn Dawson's distraught parents, Cormac and Anita.

The young couple were last night trying to console their two youngest children, Elliot and Mary-Kate.

Safety engineers have now conducted an examination of the fireplace and chimney breast at the family's Coolgreen home in White's Cross, Cork, to determine what caused the freak tragedy

The accident, which happened at 2pm on Tuesday, is believed to be linked to either chimney breast masonry or fireplace support pins giving way under the weight of the fireplace.

Gardai described the incident as "a tragic accident". A full file on the matter will be prepared for Cork coroner Dr Myra Cullinane.

"It is a really difficult time for us and we don't have anything to say. We are all devastated and are appealing for privacy at this time," a family spokesman told the Irish Independent.

"We have people to thank, like the paramedics and all our neighbours, but we will thank them privately and in our own time."

Fionn had only returned home one hour before the accident, having attended his pre-school in Upper Glanmire. He was playing in the sitting room when the heavy fireplace toppled off the wall.

The little boy suffered serious head and torso injuries. Despite being rushed to Cork University Hospital, he was pronounced dead shortly after admission.

Inquest

His father, who works for grocery firm Musgrave, was at a business meeting in Kildare when he heard about the accident and was given a garda escort as he raced to his son's hospital bedside.

Fionn's mother, Anita, is an accountant.

Fionn's grandfather, Pat Dawson, is a former Labour Party councillor and is well known in Cork political and community circles.

An inquest into the accident is likely to take place next year.

Fionn will lay in repose at Barry's funeral home in Glanmire tonight before being removed to St Joseph's Church in Springhill tomorrow for a Requiem Mass at noon.

He will be buried at St Catherine's Cemetery in Kilcully.

Irish Independent