'Best friends' and brothers - tragic Sligo siblings laid to rest

By Caroline Crawford

FAMILY and friends huddled together for support in heartbreaking scenes at the funeral of two brothers who died tragically at their home in Sligo.

Hundreds of mourners packed the rural church this morning to say farewell to nine-year-old Brandon 
Skeffington and his 
20-year-old brother Shane.

The two oak coffins were carried into St Attracta's Church in Tourlestrane, Co Sligo, in bright sunshine as mourners held back tears.

Floral wreaths of white and yellow flowers were offered as simple tributes to the brothers, who parish priest Fr John Glynn described as "the best of friends".


The boys' parents Shane and Carmel and siblings Sharon (15) and three-year-old Callum were comforted by relatives and friends as they made their way into the church to say farewell to their sons and brothers.

Just five days ago, their lives were shattered after the parents returned home to find their nine-year-old son Brandon lying on the landing at the top of the stairs with stab wounds.

Moments later, they discovered the body of their oldest son Shane in the shed behind the family home.

A post-mortem revealed that Brandon died after being stabbed in the chest.

Gardai believe that Shane, who had battled drug problems in recent months and spent some time in St Columba's psychiatric unit earlier this year, attacked Brandon with a knife after a row broke out between them over a video game. Shane then took his own life.

Fr Glynn said that words couldn't describe what had happened and that the entire community was still in shock over the deaths.

Fr Glynn said the pair were "great friends" who used to head off on journeys together and used to play football together.

Gifts brought to the altar included a football that the brothers used to play with and a Transformers toy.