By David Raleigh
A Co Limerick teenager who died over a week ago after falling from a balcony at a Spanish hotel apartment block, is to be laid to rest in his native Askeaton, this Sunday, June 24.
An investigation by the local Civil Guard police was launched into the circumstances of the death of 19-year-old Jack Walsh, from Cloonreask, Askeaton, who was a trainee electrician as well as a talented soccer player.
Mr Walsh, a triplet, had travelled to Santa Ponsa, Mallorca, on June 11 last, to meet up with friends who had made their way ahead of him to holiday on the island resort.
A few days before traveling to Spain, Mr Walsh sat a repeat Leaving Certificate maths exam paper at Colaiste Mhuire Askeaton.
Hours after arriving in Mallorca, on June 12, he sustained serious head injuries in a 39-foot fall from a balcony at the Vista Club apartments, Nuno Sanz Street, Santa Ponsa.
Mr Walsh’s family, including his parents Tony and Sandra and his sisters Tara and Orla, who later traveled to Spain, made the devastating decision to turn off his life-support machine at Hospital Universitario Son Espases, on June 14th last.
In a message posted on the website of Colaiste Mhuire Askeaton, signed by principal and secretary of the school board of management Norma O’Brien, the school was offering psychological supports to students who may be affected by Mr Walsh’s tragic and sudden death.
“We have learned of the passing of Jack Walsh, a past-pupil of Coláiste Mhuire, following a recent accident abroad. We are deeply saddened by his death. Our sympathy and thoughts are with Jack’s family and friends. May he rest in peace,” the statement said.
“This is a terrible tragedy for Jack’s family, for our school and for the entire community. Jack will be greatly missed by his fellow students, past and present, teachers and staff of Coláiste Mhuire. We greatly appreciate the offers of support that have been pouring in.”
The statement added: “Coláiste Mhuire has implemented its Critical Incident Management Plan. Psychologists from Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board (LCETB) and the National Educational Psychological Service (NEPS) are advising teachers on how best to support our school community. We ask that you respect our need to support our school community privately at this difficult time.”
The Department of Foreign Affairs confirmed that “consular assistance” was being provided to Mr Walsh’s devastated family.
Funeral arrangements for Mr Walsh were announced this Thursday, June 21.
According to his obituary Mr Walsh’s remains, which were flown from Spain back to Ireland in the past 24 hours, will repose at Kieran Madigan’s Funeral Home, Main Street, Askeaton, from 4pm-7pm this Saturday evening.
Funeral mass will take place at St Mary’s Church, Askeaton, at 1,30pm, Sunday, followed by burial in Relig Mhuire Cemetery.