THE father of former Fianna Fail politician Ger Killally has said they feared for their lives as they fled a masked gunman.
Jay Killally (69) suffered injuries to his head and hand after the car with his son and two of his grandchildren inside flipped over a ditch.
Speaking to the Herald, Mr Killally said shots were fired at their car as his son made a desperate bid to get them all to safety."The man was wearing a balaclava and had what looked like a shotgun," he said. "I feared for our lives as the car crashed. For all our lives. I think it was upside down at one stage."
One witness who came upon the crash scene said Ger Killally was "really upset". "It was really bad, the little girl just kept saying 'the bad men were shooting at us'," he said.
Mr Killally owned the car, which was being driven by his son, Ger. It is understood that the former politician had a substantial sum of money in the boot of his car at the time of the incident.
The cash was to have been used by Mr Killally to make a purchase as part of his new business, it is believed.
In the back of the car were Ger's two young children, his four-year-old daughter Beibhinn and toddler son Ferdia (2), who were securely strapped into their child seats.
As the four set off on their journey from Ger's mansion in Shean, close to Edenderry, Co Offaly, a gunman approached outside the gates of his home at around 10.40am yesterday.
"We drove out of the house in my car, Ger was driving and I was in the passenger seat, and the two kids were strapped into their seats in the back," Mr Killally told the Herald.
He said there was a silver car – believed to be an Opel Astra with a 06-D registration plate – parked nearby.
"They pulled in and blocked us in. Ger copped them. I thought it was just someone coming in but he saw the fella coming out with the balaclava on. We reversed and hit the bollard.
"We drove up the road [towards the village of Clonbullogue] but there was a bollard caught under the car and we crashed and went into a field. The kids were in their car seats and it's lucky they were, or they would be dead, because the car turned over," he added.
A neighbour witnessed the crash, which saw Jay's silver VW Passat fly through the air and into an old concrete shed.
"I was out doing the grass and I heard a bang, and when I looked up I saw a car coming over the hedge and hitting the old shed. If it wasn't for the shed the car would have rolled a few times and everybody could have been badly hurt or worse," the man told the Herald.
"I saw the driver, Ger, get out and run up the field towards another house. I ran down and his father was standing at the side of the road, so I rang the police for them. The two kids were still in the car," he added.
"The kids were okay but they were a little bit upset. The little girl just kept saying 'the bad man shot at us'," he said.
Gardai are hunting two men – the gunman and an accomplice driving their car.