'Sense of shock and loss' in the community at funeral of father and son killed in Turkey

'Sense of shock and loss' in the community at funeral of father and son killed in Turkey
25/07/2023 The joint funeral of Eoin Fitzpatrick and his son Dylan Fitzpatrick at St Peter & PaulÕs Roman Church Portlaoise today.The father and son died in a road accident in Alanya Turkey. Pic Colin Keegan/Collins Photos

Two coffins of a father and son who were killed in a moped accident in Turkey last week were laid to rest in Portlaoise today.

Eoin Fitzpatrick, 35, and his 10-year-old son, Dylan, who were from Ballytegan, Portlaoise and Clonrooske Abbey, Portlaoise, passed away when their moped collided with a bus in the resort of Alanya which was travelling to Mersin on the D-400 highway in the Kargicak District on Monday of last week.

It is understood the pair were carrying out a final errand before their departure back to Ireland.

Their remains were repatriated back to Ireland last Thursday with the help of the Kevin Bell Repatriation Trust.


Two guards of honour were formed by Portlaoise GAA Club and Dylan’s class friends from Scoil Bhride National School who held flowers as Mr Fitzpatrick's coffin and Dylan’s white coffin adorned with bright floral wreaths were brought into the church. Photographs of the father and son were placed on their coffins.

Hundreds of mourners packed the church of St Peter and St Paul’s in Portlaoise for midday Requiem Mass.

Parish Priest of Portlaoise Fr John Byrne concelebrated the funeral Mass with four other priests with support from Bishop of Kildare and Leighlin Denis Nulty.

Dylan’s emotional mother Claire Dowling told the congregation: “He loved the simple things in life, but it was his way or no way.


"As my family would say, ‘It’s Dylan’s world, and we are all just living in it.’ He loved to dance, he loved to colour, he loved to read, he loved to swim, he loved trains, and his favourite movies were Matilda and Paddington 2.

“His favourite colour was red, and his favourite thing to do at home was torment Cian, but they had a special bond that will never be replaced.

"He always held my hand and I will forever hold him in my heart. His best friend was his Daddy because he was and always will be the most amazing father to Dylan and Cian.

"I hope they are holding each other tight wherever they are. I will end with something Dylan and I would always say to each other, ‘ I love you, I love you more, I love you most.'”


Symbols of Mr Fitzpatrick and Dylan’s lives were brought to the altar which was filled with white carnation floral wreaths with their nicknames “Diggy” and “Fitz”.

A video montage of the father and son was shown on a large screen in the Church.

The joint funeral of Eoin Fitzpatrick and his son Dylan Fitzpatrick at St Peter & Paul’s Roman Church Portlaoise.Photo: Colin Keegan/Collins Photos

Man United fan

A hurley which was a big part of Eoin’s life at underage level, and at senior level was presented, a Portlaoise jersey that he wore during his playing days, a Man United soccer jersey, as he was a passionate Man United fan and a frequent visitor to Old Trafford stadium.

A model car was also brought to the altar for he had a huge passion around cars, and “always had a flashing number in the driveway” mourners heard.

Dylan’s young life was represented by a train as he adored them, he knew every make and type, goggles were symbols of him being “a water baby”.

A picture showing his love of drawing was brought up, as well as a book he loved to read 'Diary of a Wimpy Kid' being his favourite book, “ironic as there was nothing wimpy about him” explained Parish Priest John Byrne, and finally a soft toy a Huggy Wuggy showing his love for teddy bears and hugs.

Fr Byrne told mourners: “The tragic events of last week in Turkey that resulted in the deaths of father and son Eoin and Dylan have left their families heartbroken and bewildered and it (has) left a whole community shocked and united in sympathy and a desire to embrace and support those whose hearts are truly broken.

He said there has “been a palpable sense of shock and loss” in the community over the past few days.

“There is a huge congregation here in St Peter and Paul’s this afternoon and which spills out into the grounds is evidence of this desire to offer support.

"It is evidence of the popularity of the young man Eoin and his son Dylan whom we have come to commend to the mercy of God,” Fr Byrne said.

“The boys are deeply mourned by their utterly heartbroken families and friends. By Eoin’s eldest son Cian of whom he was immensely proud, and he is Dylan’s big brother and best friend.

"Cian was with them on holidays. Delighted to see the support of the GAA. To Eoin’s parents and Dylan’s cherished grandparents Frank and Rita, his sisters and aunts of Dylan’s Maryse, Ciara and Aideen, his brothers Mark and Travis, nieces and nephews.

“Dylan’s heartbroken mother Claire, his adoring grandparents Andy and Liz and Andrew his favourite uncle.

"They had a wonderful bond. All of their hearts are truly broken. Eoin’s partner Susie and her two young children Jake and Leon. (Eoin) had a great solidarity with his friends over the years. It’s so sad Dylan will not be joining his school friends in fourth class. He was a cherished pupil of Scoil Bhride.

“There are no words that can mend hearts broken by a tragedy like this. We pray today that they may experience that hug as they are welcomed into heavenly life.”

Relatives of the father and son’s extended families and friends also gave an insight into their lives.

Written by Sarah Slater.

Keep up to date with all the latest news on our website