Longford stunned by sudden death of David O'Brien in Australia

Aisling Kiernan

Reporter:

Aisling Kiernan

Email:

aisling.kiernan@longfordleader.ie

David O'Brien

Tributes have been in ample supply following news of the tragic passing of David O'Brien in Australia last week.

There is a deep sense of sadness across the entire community of Clondra following the sudden and unexpected death of local man David O’Brien (37) in Australia last Thursday.

Parish Priest, Fr Turlough Baxter said the south Longford community had been left “very shaken” by the young man’s death.

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“David’s parents and family are very well known and respected in the area, and David too was well known here,” added Fr Baxter.

“People in the Parish are very shaken by what has happened.”

The local priest, meanwhile, said neighbours and friends were rallying around the O'Brien family in an effort to support them at this very difficult time.

“People just want to help and support David’s parents Malachy and Bernie, his sisters and brother as much as they can,” he added.

Meanwhile, the Department of Foreign Affairs continues to provide consular assistance to the family as they prepare to repatriate Mr O’Brien’s remains.

The Longford man died suddenly at his home last Thursday in Perth.

He had been living in Australia for a number of years and was planning a trip home to Longford for Christmas.

As a child he attended the local national school in Clondra and is a past pupil of St Mel’s College, Longford.

Former Principal of St Mel’s College, Denis Glennon said he remembered the late Mr O'Brien and his brother Ross very well.

“David was a lovely quiet boy,” recalled Mr Glennon, before extending his sympathy to the O’Brien family.

“I was shocked to learn of his death; there is such a sadness in the community.”

Colette McManus, Principal of Clondra NS said everyone was left “shocked and saddened” by the past pupil’s death.

“David attended Clondra NS for eight years and was a kind, considerate and friendly young lad with lots of friends,” she told the Leader.

“He was an all round excellent student who participated in all aspects of school life.”

The local principal also added, “This is a huge loss to David’s family and friends and indeed to the entire community here in Clondra; we are very shocked and saddened by what has happened.”

Local Councillor Seamus Butler also expressed his sympathy to Mr O'Brien's family.

Cllr Butler also pointed out that the timing of the tragedy so soon to Christmas made it all the more agonising. "It's terrible news, it really is. To lose a son is unimaginable but when it happens the other side of the world, it just adds to the tragedy." Funeral arrangements yet to be announced.