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‘This is a traumatic experience for us,’ says uncle of mother killed in hit-and-run

Man in his 40s arrested after presenting to garda station

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Laura Connolly

Laura Connolly

Garda forensic officers at the scene of the fatal accident at Lifford, Co Donegal. Photo: NW NEwspix

Garda forensic officers at the scene of the fatal accident at Lifford, Co Donegal. Photo: NW NEwspix

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Laura Connolly

A bride-to-be was killed in a hit and run in Donegal in the early hours of yesterday morning.

She has been named locally as Laura Connolly (34) from the town of Lifford.

The mother of one was killed after being hit by a van at around 2.45am while walking on the N15 at Townparks in the border town.

Ms Connolly was taken by ambulance to University Hospital Letterkenny, where she was later pronounced dead.

The road where the incident occurred was closed for examination by scenes of crime officers and Garda forensic investigators.

Friends say Laura had been browsing for wedding dresses in nearby Strabane, Co Tyrone, earlier in the day and decided to go out with friends later that night.

A man in his 40s was arrested yesterday after presenting himself at a garda station.

Gardaí also seized a van for technical examination as part of their investigation.

He was being questioned at Letterkenny garda station.

Tributes have been paid to Ms Connolly online, with her uncle Andy Connolly pleading with anybody with any information in relation to the hit-and-run to contact the family or the gardaí.

“Anybody with any information in relation to the killing and hit-and-run of our happy-go-lucky, bubbly niece Laura Connolly at the Lifford roundabout last night can contact any of us with any details,” he said.

“This is a traumatic experience for everybody in our family, a very massive shock of a girl so full of life. A son and boyfriend, father, mother and brother, all left with the world turned upside down,” he said.

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“RIP Laura, you’ll be sorely missed always. I’ll always remember good aul laughs we had,” he added.

Local SDLP councillor Jason Barr also appealed for anyone with information to come ­forward.

“My heart aches this morning at the devastating news of Laura Connolly,” he said.

“Laura was one of the most caring, outgoing, bubbly, mad as a box of frogs girls you could ever meet. If you wanted a laugh, Laura would have gave it to you.

“I called bingo where she lives last year and her nickname for me since then was ‘All The 4s’.

“A young life taken too soon in such tragic circumstances.

“My whole-hearted condolences go out to her mum and dad, fiancé, son, siblings, the wider Connolly family circle and her close friends.

“May God give you all the strength to get through this.”

“I would appeal to anyone with information to come forward. This family will need closure. Rest easy Laura,” he added, with a broken heart and crying face emojis.

Peter O’Donnell of Raphoe Boxing Club, where Ms Connolly’s partner Joe McCullagh was a former member, also expressed his shock at her death.

“We were shocked and saddened to learn of the devastating death of Laura Connolly as the result of a hit and run in the early hours of this morning and on behalf of the Raphoe boxing club and the County Donegal Boxing Board, we would like to extend our sincere condolences to her mother and father, her son, and her partner Joe McCullagh (former boxer at Raphoe Oakleaf and Ring boxing clubs),” he said.

Local Lifford county councillor Gerry Crawford said Laura’s death had cast a shadow over the entire community.

“The terrible news reaching into this community this morning has cast a shadow of sadness over a wide area.

“The passing of someone so young in such tragic circumstances will be widely felt.

A post-mortem examination was due to be carried out on Ms Connolly’s body, and gardaí issued an appeal for witnesses or anyone with information to come forward.

Anyone with information or who has video footage, including dashcam from the scene and route, is asked to contact Letterkenny Garda Station at 074 9167116 or the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111.


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