A MAN from the Kilrea area has died following a collision between a car and a lorry on the M1 in County Louth today.
He was Ciaran McShane who has been described by friends as a “proper gentleman”.
The incident happened southbound between Junction 17 and Junction 16 near Dundalk at around 5am.
Mr McShane, who was the driver of the car, was in his 30s.
The lorry driver, who is in his early 40s, was uninjured.
He was arrested at the scene and was being questioned at Dundalk Garda Station, RTE reported.
Causeway Coast and Glens councillor Sean Bateson knew Mr McShane and said he was highly thought of in the community.
“Absolutely shocked and devastated to hear of the tragic passing of Ciaran today,” he said.
“Ciaran, or ‘Beastie’ as he was nicknamed by friends and family, was a proper gentleman.
“One of life’s good guys.
“I know the entire community of Kilrea and further afield are stunned and saddened of this tragedy.
“No one expects to wake up in the morning and hear of such terrible news, it’s really awful.
“My thoughts and prayers go out to Ciaran’s partner, his children, and the entire McShane family at this difficult time.”
Councillor Helena Dallat O’Driscoll said: “It is heartbreaking that a family has lost someone so young and who is also a father of such very young children.
“Kilrea is a tight-knit community and will be shocked and saddened at this devastating news.
“My deepest sympathies and prayers go out to Ciaran’s family circle.”
Chairman of Kilrea GAA Club, Martin McWilliams, said: “He was a past player here at the club.
“We are all very saddened to hear about this and our hearts go out the family.
“Ciaran was a very and decent and upstanding lad,” Q Radio reported.
Tributes to Mr McShane are being paid on social media.
One said: ‘RIP Ciaran McShane , such a lovely down to earth young man, a true gentleman, thinking of all your family at this very sad time ‘.
Another post said: ‘Rest in peace Ciaran, the life and soul of the party. A true gentleman’.
A funeral notice reads: ‘Ciaran McShane (Kilrea/Maghera) 22nd June 2020: Suddenly as a result of an accident Ciarán R.I.P. (27 Macknagh Lane) loving husband of Shauna and beloved daddy of Conán and Carina.
‘Loving son of Bertie and Patricia and dear brother of Siobhán (Donaghy), Damian and Odrán. Son-in-law of Brian and Meta McEldowney. St. Anthony pray for him. Funeral arrangements will be updated as they become available.’