Grief as 10 year old Joshua laid to rest
Communities in Carlingford and Killeavy were plunged into grief following the tragic death of a ten year old boy in a drowning accident at his family home at Mountain Park on Thursday.
It is believed that Joshua (Joshie) Hill drowned in a hot tub at the house he shared with his parents Olivia and Peter and older brother Oliver.
Gardaí were called to the scene around 7am on Thursday morning and Josh was taken to Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Drogheda, where he was pronounced dead.
The family, who moved to Carlingford around ten years ago, said in a notice published on RIP.ie that 'Joshie's memory will be cherished forever by his heartbroken parents Olivia and Peter, best friend and brother Oliver, adoring grandparents Marie and John Mackin and Christopher and Sandy Hill, uncles and aunts Andrew and Linda, Davinia and Damien, Darren and Ceire, John and Rheea, Charlotte and Lee, special cousins Chelsie, Amy, Clare, Sarah, Darah, Dillon, Alex and Uma, doting aunt Bridie and close family and friends.'
There were poignant scenes as hundreds of mourners attended his funeral Mass on Saturday morning in St. Michael's Church, before he was laid to rest in St. Michael's Cemetery, Carlingford.
His father Peter thanked those who came to celebrate Joshua's life, whom he described as 'a ray of light'.
Parish Priest Fr Brian MacRaois noted that while Joshua was non-verbal, 'From that inner purity there radiated energy that was beautiful, a bright light always shining, a joy that was infectious.'
'Joshua was joyful, he was happy, he was happy in himself, he was happy in his family, he was happy in his home, he was happy in Rathore School, he was happy in the Maria Goretti centre,' he added,
His family had asked for contributions for the Marie Goretti Respite Centre in Lordship and representatives from the centre formed a guard of honour as Joshua's white coffin was carried from the church.
His death is being treated as a tragic accident and a garda spokesman said that a file will be prepared for the Coroners Court.
SDLP assembly member Justin McNulty, who is a family friend of the child's mother Olivia Mackin, who is originally from Killeavy in south Armagh, said: 'Words just can't express my sadness and the sadness of this community. I know the community will rally around as much as they can and they will come through this as a family.'