Killer Shane is remembered one year on in mum's tribute

Conor Feehan

THE mother of Trinity student Shane Clancy, who took his own life after killing his love rival Sebastian Crean, has paid an emotional online tribute to him on the first anniversary of their shocking deaths.

Leonie Fennell has also posted many touching photographs of Shane on her blog, which campaigns for better labelling and awareness of the potential side-effects of the depression medication he was on.

Clancy took his own life after stabbing his ex-girlfriend Jennifer Hannigan in the back, killing her new partner, Sebastian Crean, and also stabbing Crean's brother, Dylan, at the Crean household at Bray's Cuala Grove in the early hours of August 16 last year.

As the two families marked the first anniversary of the tragedy this week, Shane's mum paid a touching tribute to her son.

Shane targeted Seb Crean after his own relationship with Jennifer had broken down and she became Crean's partner.


Shane had driven Sebastian and others to the house after he met them in Dalkey on a night of socialising, but then he left to buy a set of knives in an 24-hour supermarket before returning to the house and embarking on his spree of violence.

"Shane was the nicest, kindest, funniest guy you could meet. He was loved by all his friends and family, and adored by his younger siblings," Leonie wrote in her blog as the first anniversary approached.

"He took them out every weekend to the beach, and Eddie Rockets. He babysat for us all the time and even minded them when we went to New York for a weekend," she added.

Leonie said she knew she never had to worry about her other children when Shane was minding them because he was so reliable.

"He had a huge passion for the homeless and often gave his Dart fare away and walked home from Trinity to Dalkey. We regularly had Christmas dinner late because we had to wait for Shane who was handing out dinners in Dublin," she wrote. "He told people he didn't want presents at his 21st, but to make use of the St Vincent de Paul box instead, as he had everything," she added.

Writing on Shane's hatred of violence, Leonie said that he had come home once and told them of a row in the Conradh na Gaeilge bar on Harcourt Street where he worked in which a man tried to hit a girl.

"He was so upset that someone could hit a girl. We said 'Why didn't you box him?' and Shane said that he didn't do violence and he wasn't going down to that guy's level," she wrote.


Without naming the Creans out of respect, Leonie also reaches out to them.

"I am, and always will be so very sorry that other people were involved in this tragedy, and will respect them and their families by not mentioning them by name," she says.

Leonie goes on to state her belief that it was Shane's depression medication that caused him to do what he did.

"We are just ordinary people. We are not medically qualified to tell you how this happened. The only thing I can be certain of is that Shane would not have done this if it wasn't for the medication," she explains.

Leonie tells how Shane was on medication for three weeks before he died.

"I know without a shadow of doubt that the drug caused Shane to behave like this," she writes. The jury at Shane's inquest returned an open verdict, rejecting a suicide verdict.