Tuesday 16 January 2018

Man (19) charged over Susan Dunne's murder

Susan Dunne (53)
The body of Susan Dunne being removed in a hearse from Ballinageragh, Lixnaw, Co Kerry

A 19-year-old man has been charged with the murder of Susan Dunne in her home in Lixnaw, co Kerry.

The suspect who was arrested yesterday afternoon will appear at Killarney District Court in the morning charged in connection with Susan Dunne's death.

Friends of tragic mother Susan Dunne who was slain at her rural home have paid tribute to her as  a "devoted mother" and "treasured friend" who had dedicated her life to helping others.

Susan's friends in Kerry Autism Action said she worked tirelessly to provide for her son Patrick and to support her friends in the autism community.

It is believed Mrs Dunne (53) had been attacked in the bedroom of her home with a hatchet.

A postmortem examined is being carried out at Kerry General Hospital.

Neighbours became concerned and investigated after her car was spotted leaving her house and being driven by someone else.

A teenager was later spotted in an agitated state in the Lixnaw and later in Listowel and was arrested.

Ms Dunne moved from Kildare to Kerry over 10 years ago and became involved in Kerry Autism Action in 2009 becoming its chairperson.

Spokesman Domnick Walsh said: "Susan was a kind, caring, selfless lady and an inspiration to all and made a lasting impression on everyone she came in contact with."

Mr Walsh said she had campaigned relentlessly to raise awareness of autism, not only in Kerry but all over Ireland.

As well as organising and chairing Kerry Autism Action's monthly support group meetings and regular coffee mornings, Susan organised autism conferences, information stands and workshops, fundraisers and fun events for all families in Kerry that have a child with autism, even setting up Kerry's first sensory friendly cinema club.

"In addition to her tremendous voluntary work with Kerry Autism Action, Susan also volunteered with other charities for special needs," Mr Walsh continued.

"She was an invaluable source of guidance, support and encouragement to many special needs families. Susan was always willing to help or lend a listening ear when needed.

"She dedicated her life to helping others and in doing so touched the lives of so many people," he said.

Majella O'Sullivan

Irish Independent

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