Thursday 22 February 2018

House where brother killed twins to be demolished

Jonathan O’Driscoll with his twin nine-year-old brothers Thomas ‘TomTom’ (left) and Patrick ‘Paddy'
Jonathan O’Driscoll with his twin nine-year-old brothers Thomas ‘TomTom’ (left) and Patrick ‘Paddy'
Ralph Riegel

Ralph Riegel

A family who lost three sons in a horrific murder-suicide will have the home where the tragedy occurred demolished by a council within the next 10 days.

Thomas and Helen O'Driscoll have been living in a caravan and motorhome parked behind their cottage at Deerpark, Charleville, Co Cork, since the bodies of their twins, Patrick 'Paddy' and Thomas 'TomTom' O'Driscoll (9), were discovered in separate bedrooms at the bungalow on September 4 last year. They had been stabbed to death by their older brother, Jonathan (21), who later took his own life in Buttevant some 20km away.

Jonathan had a history of mental health problems and had been suffering from depression, paranoia and psychosis.

A coroner's inquest last month heard that Jonathan had stopped taking all his anti-psychosis medications over a week before the tragedy.

The twins died from 30 stab wounds each, inflicted just over an hour after they had been brought home from Banogue National School by Jonathan.

Thomas and Helen were away for the day buying a miniature horse-drawn caravan for the twins' birthday.

Read more: 'The first step is always going to be the hardest... but if you look, you’ll find it' - Mother of tragic Charleville brothers

The couple had pleaded with Cork County Council to demolish the property and build a new replacement home on the site.

Helen confirmed to the Irish Independent that demolition work was now expected to commence within the next 10 days.

"I've been in there twice since the tragedy happened. Every time I walk in that door it is like I'm reliving the whole thing all over again," she said.

But the couple has insisted on remaining at the site, given all the happy memories of the children they raised there.

"I feel as if the spirits of the three boys are there. I know they are in heaven looking down on us and waiting for us, God speed them. That yard is our children's playground.

"It is our boys' playground and we will never, ever leave it."

Irish Independent

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