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Brother of Irish woman killed in Tunisia: 'She was our baby'

Martina and Larry Hayes are believed to be among 38 killed in Friday’s attack.

A tourist places places flowers at the scene of Friday's attack in Sousse, Tunisia
A tourist places places flowers at the scene of Friday's attack in Sousse, Tunisia
Image: Abdeljalil Bounhar/AP/Press Association Images

AN IRISH WOMAN killed in last week’s terror attack in Tunisia has been described as a “quiet, unassuming lady”.

Martina Hayes and her husband of 32 years, Laurence (Larry), were on their third trip to the Sousse resort when they were shot dead on Friday, her brother Billy Kelly said.

The Athlone couple, who have one daughter, were due to return to Ireland the next day.

Kelly told The Joe Finnegan Show on Shannonside Northernsound FM that his sister was their family’s “little baby” as the youngest of 11 children.

A friend of the couple, who had worked with Larry, had called to his house on Friday night to say they were not returning any texts or calls, he said.

Another sister confirmed their deaths on Saturday afternoon.

Kelly had not known that Martina was staying at the resort targeted by the attacker when news of fatalities came through on Friday.

Her death, he said, is difficult to come to terms with.

It’s just really hit home this morning. You get up Monday morning thinking life should continue as normal – but it doesn’t.

The community of Kiltoom in south Roscommon, where Martina grew up, were in shock at the news, he told Finnegan.

“They were calling all day yesterday,” he said.

Fatalities

Martina and Larry Hayes are believed to be among 38 killed in the attack.

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Their bodies have not yet been formally identified.

Irish couple Anthony and Becky Tunstead, who survived the massacre, told The Anton Savage Show on Today FM this morning that they were due to meet up with the Athlone couple that day.

“We were to meet them at the pool bar for lunch, and that’s where they were blown up,” Becky said.

A third Irish citizen killed at the resort was named on Friday as Meath nurse Lorna Carty.

The mother of two was on holidays with her husband when the attack happened.

Read: Minister confirms two more Irish citizens died in Tunisia attack >

Read: New footage shows hotel workers pursuing Tunisia beach attacker >

About the author:

Catherine Healy

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