Sunday 22 September 2019

'She did everything right' - brother pays tribute to cyclist killed in accident

Family pain: Marianne Roche from Drogheda, Co Louth remembering her nephew Daniel Roche – killed while cycling in 2016 – at the RSA World Day of Remembrance in Dublin.
PHOTO: Robbie Reynolds
Family pain: Marianne Roche from Drogheda, Co Louth remembering her nephew Daniel Roche – killed while cycling in 2016 – at the RSA World Day of Remembrance in Dublin. PHOTO: Robbie Reynolds
RSA chairperson Liz O’Donnell. Photo: Gareth Chaney, Collins

Allison Bray

There wasn't a dry eye in the room when the brother of a cyclist who was killed in a road traffic accident paid an emotional tribute to his beloved sister.

Neil Fox was among the bereaved loved ones of people who lost their lives on our roads attending a special Road Safety Authority (RSA) ceremony at the Smock Alley theatre in Dublin yesterday ahead the World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims next Sunday.

Mr Fox (38) read out a poignant personal reflection on how the tragic death of his sister Donna (30), from Balbriggan, north Dublin, two years ago turned his world upside down.

He is now working full time as a cycling safety campaigner to prevent other families from going through the same heartache.

"Two whole years have passed. Before that, gardaí were just gardaí, bikes were just bikes, standing at pedestrian lights was simply standing at the lights. Not now, though," he said. "What I wouldn't do to have one more moment with you. To hear your voice and lose myself in that smile that housed such joy and warmth, to be wrapped in your arms one more."

Ms Fox, who worked as a nutritionist at a pharmacy, was cycling to work when she was struck by a lorry at Seville Place and Guild Street on September 16, 2016. She died at the scene.

Mr Fox said his sister did "everything right". She was travelling in the cycling lane, obeying traffic and wearing a helmet. Yet the lorry driver, who struck her as he was turning left, didn't see her, he said.

Mr Fox said his attendance at the RSA ceremony and his ongoing work campaigning for cycling safety was a means of honouring his sister's memory.

Meanwhile, RSA chair Liz O'Donnell said while drink driving and speeding remain the leading cause of death on our roads, the use of mobile phones by both drivers and pedestrians was contributing to the carnage on our roads.

"People have got to cop on," she said. "The number of people who walk out into traffic without looking up from their mobile devices is a growing problem, as well as drivers who continue to use mobile phones while driving."

Irish Independent

Editor's Choice

Also in Irish News