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Shay Lynch, from Co Clare, who died on Saturday

Funeral takes place for Shay Lynch, who died in swimming pool accident at Co Clare hotel

His father told mourners that he will “always be forever our beautiful boy Shay-Shay”.

THE FATHER OF seven-year-old Co Clare schoolboy Shay (James) Lynch has said he will “always be forever our beautiful boy Shay-Shay”.

Addressing mourners at his son’s funeral mass at St Senan’s Church in Clonlara today, James Lynch said “to Shay-Shay – our amazing little boy, from your first breath, we have loved you so much with all of our hearts”.

The first class pupil at Scoil Seanáin Naofa, Clonlara in south-east Clare died following a tragic accident at a Co Clare hotel pool on Saturday while attending a party at the hotel.

At his funeral mass today, Lynch said that he would complete the playhouse that Shay had started work on “just the way you wanted it”.

Lynch said his son was “such a gentle, caring, sweet boy who wouldn’t harm a fly”.

“Thank you for loving me, your Mommy, and big sister and friend, Abi. Your favourite teddy Dougie is in safe hands now with Abi,” he said. 

Shay Lynch was a “amazing artist” and “creative in every way”, mourners were told. 

Addressing his son, James Lynch said: “I will miss you coming to work with me and how you loved putting on your little works-pants and pencil over your ear.

“I promise that I will never leave the first piece of timber you cut for your playhouse a few weeks away from us with the lovely pictures you drew on them.”

He said he will finish building the playhouse with Abi the way his son wanted it. 

“I know you always said that you would like to be a builder like me and you already had your apprenticeship started and you would have been a great one,” Lynch said. 

“We know that you are safe now and at peace with your Nana Christina … We will forever miss you, we will forever love you. You will always be forever our beautiful boy Shay-Shay.”

Earlier, James Lynch had helped carry his son’s white coffin to the top of the church and briefly kissed the photo of his son in his Clonlara colours as he comforted his daughter Abi.

In the packed church, parents comforted their young children as Fr Pat Mulcahy said last weekend was joyful as 41 local children celebrated their Confirmation and three baptisms took place in the parish while locals looked forward to the “epic” hurling match between Clare and Limerick.

Fr Muclahy recalled meeting Shay’s mother Tania at the Confirmation service on Saturday “and we went about our respective businesses, just another day”. 

He said that evening a “dark cloud had descended on our parish community as information disseminated through social media regarding the sad news which stopped all of us in our tracks”.

“Our young, vibrant Shay had left us. The storm clouds of panic and disbelief had truly invaded our hearts and souls ‘surely this cannot be?’ A seven-year-old full of the fullness of life – out for a day of enjoyment – he never came home,” Fr Muclahy said. 

In a reference to the grief that has enveloped the community since the weekend, Fr Mulcahy paid tribute to the work of the local school and support systems “that came to the rescue”.

Earlier in momentos brought to the altar, Shay Lynch’s big sister Abi, “who he adored”, and his cousin Cory left his “beloved Dougie” teddy and some of his favourite toys.

His cousin Craig brought up Shay’s work pants, pencil and tools.

Two other cousins, Ruth and Alfie, brought up some of Shay Lynch’s art work and Oreo cookies. Another cousin, Cathal, brought up his school jumper.

Shay Lynch was later laid to rest in St Thomas’s Church grounds, Bridgetown.