Guitarist killed in crash hours before release of first record
A TALENTED guitarist was killed in a crash just hours before his band released their first record.
Eoghan MacAoidh (24) from rising Dublin band the Liberty Kings, was killed instantly when the Volkswagen camper van he had been travelling in was struck by a lorry.
The accident, which occurred on the northbound M1 near Enderby in Leicestershire, England, on Wednesday, has also left his fellow band guitarist, Brian Kelly, fighting for his life.
The five-piece group were travelling from a gig in Kent to the national launch of their first single 'Electric Army' in Manchester when tragedy struck.
The band had also been due to play the last leg of their UK tour, which kicked off at the world-famous Cavern Club in Liverpool where The Beatles first found fame. The tour was due to finish in Islington in London today and the group were in good spirits after just being signed to a record label.
It is understood the group's camper van had stopped on the hard shoulder before it was hit by the lorry.
Mr MacAoidh, from Inchicore in Dublin, was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash, while Mr Kelly was rushed to hospital in Nottingham.
He is currently in a critical condition and medics are believed to have put him into an induced coma in a bid to reduce swelling on his brain.
The remaining members of the band, lead singer Darragh Kelly, bassist Colm Slattery, and drummer Jason Lawless, suffered minor injuries and were taken to hospital. However, they have since been discharged.
Local police yesterday said that one person has been arrested in connection with the crash.
Speaking to the Irish Independent yesterday, the band's manager Lianne Lockyer said Mr MacAoidh's death was "devastating". She said: "The band were on their way to launch their first single nationally in the UK when the crash happened."
"Everyone is completely devastated. It was his dream to make it big in music and Eoghan was living out his dream.
"I have never seen anyone play the guitar as well as he did," she added. "He was amazing and he helped to write the songs."
Mr MacAoidh's body has not yet been released to his family and as a result no decision has been made on the date of his funeral.
Ms Lockyer also revealed she has been maintaining a vigil at the bedside of Mr Kelly, with his family.
"We have been staying at Brian's bed and trying to help as much as we can. It is a terrible time for everyone involved," she said.
"Brian also suffered a punctured lung in the crash and the doctors didn't think he would make it through the first or second night, but he fought through."
All of the band are from Dublin, with the exception of Mr Lawless who is from Galway.
Since forming last year, they have played a number of Dublin's most popular music haunts, including Whelan's and The Village.
Meanwhile, a pensioner who was killed in a road collision in Co Waterford on Thursday was named by gardai yesterday.
James Flynn (79), was seriously injured after his car careered off the road and crashed at Castlereagh, Ballymacarberry, around 9.45am on Thursday morning.
Mr Flynn, from Reana- dampaun in Ballymacarbery, was taken to South Tipperary General Hospital in Clonmel, but was pronounced dead later that evening.