‘Zach will be dearly missed’ – Tributes paid to teen who died after being hit by truck in Co Mayo

Zach Quinn (14) died instantly in tragedyThe schoolboy, who was from Galway City, was a talented athlete

Zach Quinn was described as a 'beautiful, kind, fun loving young man'. Photo: Coláiste Muire Máthair

Eoghan Moloney

A teenage boy killed after he was struck by truck in Co Mayo on Tuesday has been named as 14-year-old Zach Quinn.

Zach, a native of the Galway City area, “died instantly from his injuries” at the scene after he was struck by a truck on the R345 Neale to Cong road, shortly before 5pm on Tuesday.

In a heartbreaking tribute to the teenager, Betty Hernon, the principal of Coláiste Muire Máthair, where Zach was a second-year student, said he was a “beautiful, kind, fun-loving young man”.

“It is with huge sadness that we mourn the passing of second-year student Zach Quinn following a traffic accident. Zach was a lovely lad who contributed greatly to the College community and will be dearly missed by his loving family and friends. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam dílis,” Ms Hernon said.

“His presence shall be very much missed here in the school. We are deeply saddened by his death.”

Ms Hernon said the school has put support structures in place to help Zach’s fellow students, in a letter published online today.

“Our thoughts are with Zach’s family, his classmates and friends at this very sad and difficult time,” Ms Hernon said.

“Although classes will continue as usual, I anticipate the next few days will be difficult for everyone. However, it is generally accepted that being in school and in the company of friends helps students feel grounded and provides a safe environment in coming to terms with their loss and sadness.”

Galway Athletics  also paid tribute to Zach, describing the youngster as a “cross-country star”.

"Zach was an outstanding athlete and leaves behind a heart broken family and club. May he Rest in Peace,” the organisation said in a message posted online.

Zach was a runner for Loch Lurgan AC in West Galway.

The teenager’s body has been removed to Mayo University Hospital where a post-mortem examination will take place. The driver of the truck was not injured in the incident.

The Neale to Cong road was closed for a time to allow for the scene to be examined by Garda Forensic Collision Investigators.

Gardaí are appealing to anyone who witnessed the collision to contact them. Anyone who was travelling on the R345 between 4pm and 5pm today and who may have camera footage (including dash cam) is asked to make this available to investigators.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Claremorris garda station 094 937 2080, the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111, or any garda station.