Ballymacward Primary School was closed on Wednesday as a mark of respect to one of its pupils, six-year-old pupil Diarmuid Frazer who passed away following a car accident at Railway Street, in Lisburn last week.
Diarmuid died on Friday, just days after the accident where he and twin brother were struck by a car as they attempted to cross the street, close to a hairdressing salon. His twin Cormac suffered a broken arm.
Police say that they are still appealling for witnesses to the incident that occurred last Wednesday afternoon.
Principal of the school, Brendan Sadlier paid tribute to the boy.
“Diarmuid was a lovely wee boy, very bright and very popular with all the children and staff,” he said.
“We are a small school where all the children know each other well and the families are very close. This is devastating for Diarmuid’s family and for the whole school community.” He went onto say that staff were helping the children in coming to terms with what has happened.
“Our parish priest and experts from SEELB are on hand to assist,” he stated.
“We have a wonderful school and parish community who will continue to rally round as they have done in recent days since we heard about the accident.
“I know that schools in the area and much further afield have been praying for Diarmuid’s family and for our pupils and staff. We have had great support from CCMS and the SEELB.
“Our thoughts and prayers go out to the entire family circle at this terribly distressing time.”
Passersby have been leaving flowers and messages at the scene of the accident.
“A little fellow just leant not given. The Cleland family,” read one message.
In another a simple message stated, “Sleep little angel. May you be a star in the sky to watch over your family RIP. Little Man xxx.”
In another, “Thoughts and prayers are with the family at this sad time. Gourley family.”
Cousins Andrea and Katrina, left flowers with a message, “Sleep well little angel. Give granny and granda a big hug and kiss from us. We will look after Cormac, John James, Orlaith and your mummy and daddy. Miss and love you always.”
Other tributes came flooding in from councillors.
Deputy Mayor Andrew Ewing said, ”The local community are feeling a sense of total shock and disbelief at the tragic loss of young Diarmuid.
“All our thoughts and prayers are with the family circle at this very difficult time. Our thoughts are also with young Cormac and trust he soon makes a full recovery.”
Councillor Alan Carlisle described the tragedy as ‘terrible’.
“The whole city feels for the family of the six-year-old boy who died on our roads last Friday,” he said. “Our heartfelt sympathy goes to his family at this time.
“And not forgetting the impact this could have on the driver of the car who is a teenager little more than a child.
On Saturday, members of South Antrim football team held a minute’s silence in memory of the young boy.
Councillor Pat Catney said, “The community are in total shock at the death of the little boy. We are all devastated at hearing of this tragedy,”
Lisburn Mayor Margaret Tolerton also expressed her sorrow.
She said: “My heart goes out to the child’s parents, twin brother and wider family circle. “
Lisburn Town North DUP Councillor Scott Carson said, “Any death in such circumstances is difficult to come to terms with, however it is even more tragic when the victim is a young child.”
Councillor Stephen Martin said, “The horror of this can’t be imagined. My thoughts and prayers are with the family.”
Lagan Valley MP Jeffrey Donaldson too said, “My heart goes out to Diarmuids family and especially his twin brother.”
Mr. Donaldson also expressed concern for the car driver involved.
Councillor James Tinsley who visited the family spoke of his shock and sadness and said that his thoughts and prayers were with the family at this very difficult time,