Friday 23 February 2018

Farmer 'who loved music' dies in quad bike tragedy

Caroline Crawford

Caroline Crawford

A FATHER of four who died in a quad bike accident was remembered by friends for his great love of music.

Garrett Howley (64) from Carracrum, Bonniconlon near Ballina, Co Mayo, died yesterday morning when his quad bike overturned while he was checking on a pregnant heifer on his farm.

Mr Howley (pictured) was checking on the animal at around 4am when the quad bike is understood to have hit a stone and overturned, seriously injuring him.

He was discovered by his wife Peggy later that morning when she became concerned that he had not returned home.

The previous night Mr Howley had played his accordion at a charity event in his daughter's bar, Katie's Corner, in Ballina.

Mr Howley, a father of three girls, Katie, Deirdre and Claire, and one boy, Garrett, was a keen accordion player who also played regularly at the town's Merry Monk bar. Yesterday the bar's owner Joe Lavelle said the entire staff were devastated by his death.

"Garrett played here every Sunday night for 13 years. I'd say he only missed four Sundays in all that time. He just loved music and gave freely of his time. He finished playing here and then went over to Katie's to play for a local charity event.''

Mr Howley's body was removed to Mayo General Hospital in Castlebar for a post-mortem examination.

His family are making his funeral arrangements.

Two investigations have been launched into his death, by the Health and Safety Authority and the gardai.

Irish Independent

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