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'He was like a wounded pup' - Mother makes emotional appeal over speed limits

Roseann Brennan’s son Jake died in June after being knocked down near his home.

THE MOTHER OF a six-year-old boy killed after being knocked down outside his home in June has made a moving appeal for a change to speed limits in housing estates in Ireland.

Roseann Brennan, whose son Jake died near his home on Lintown Grove on the outskirts of Kilkenny, was speaking on TV3′s Ireland AM programme this morning.

In an extensive and powerful interview, she described Jake’s final moments in harrowing detail, and made an impassioned case for lowering the speed limit to 20 km/h in residential areas in Ireland.

Ireland AM on TV3 Jake Brennan Six-year-old Jake Brennan, who was knocked down and killed by a car in June Source: TV3.ie

Brennan, who has launched the “Jake’s Legacy” Campaign to lower speed limits and introduce mandatory speed bumps, spoke movingly about the moments after Jake was hit by a car after running out on to the road outside the family home:

The only way I can explain it is he was like a wounded little pup.
He was walking towards me, and I ran to him and we met in the middle of the road and he collapsed in my arms.
He kind of said to me, “Mammy”… It was like he thought he did something wrong and I was reassuring him that he didn’t.
He was so pale and so grey from the word go.

Ireland AM on TV3 Jake Brennan with sister Savannah Jake Brennan, who died in June, holds his baby sister Savannah. Source: TV3.ie

Along with Jake’s father Christopher, Brennan at first thought Jake might only be suffering from shock, but gave an account of how they quickly realised the full, horrific extent of his injuries:

I had seen his little top had come up and I had seen the tyre mark so I begged him to lie back down…
He was kind of saying “Mammy, I don’t want to die” and I said “You’re not going to die baby, you’re not.”
I was telling him “I love you baby, I love you”, and it was like he just took one look to the left and then he just had these brown, greenish eyes and he was gone on me.”

Ireland AM on TV3 L-R: Kaelem, Christopher, Jake, Roseann and Savannah Roseann and Christopher Brennan with Jake (front and centre), Kaelem (L), and Savannah (R). Source: TV3.ie

Jake Brennan was one of 23 pedestrians to be killed on Irish roads so far this year. Road deaths in general are up on last year, with 122 fatalities as of today, as compared to 117 this time 12 months ago.

In June, Road Safety Authority (RSA) CEO Moyagh Murdock told the Oireachtas Public Accounts Committee that while road deaths in general were down over the last few years, more “vulnerable” people were being killed, in particular pedestrians.

Murdock added: “Speed is still the single biggest factor in road fatalities.”

You can watch Roseann Brennan’s extraordinary interview in full over at Ireland AM.

Read: Six-year-old boy knocked down and killed in Kilkenny housing estate>

Driver deaths are down, but “more vulnerable” road users are being killed>

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About the author:

Dan MacGuill

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