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Girl (3) knocked down and killed in Portlaoise was a ‘bright star’, funeral hears |

A three-year-old girl killed in a road collision in Co Laois was a “bright star”, her funeral has heard.

Rosaleen McDonagh, known as Rosie, died after being struck by a car in Portlaoise last Wednesday.

The incident happened in Cosby Avenue in the Fairgreen residential area of the town.

Family and friends gathered at St Peter and Paul’s church in Portlaoise for the young girl’s funeral mass on Monday.

Rosaleen McDonagh funeral
Mourners follow the coffin of Rosaleen McDonagh, wearing T-shirts with pictures of the three-year-old. Photo: Liam McBurney/PA

Many wore white T-shirts with pictures of Rosie on them, while others wore pink-coloured clothing.

Peppa Pig balloons were also brought into the church for the service.

Parish priest Fr John Byrne extended his condolences to Rosie’s parents Bernard and Victoria, her brother Bernie and sisters Julia, Valerie, Priscilla and Jolene. He also spoke of the loss being felt by her grandparents and great grandparents.

He referred to Rosie’s “tragic and sudden passing” as he described the funeral as a “great day of loss and pain”.

“She was a bright star among you and remember all the love that she showed to her parents and grandparents and great grandparents, that love lives on and Rosie is still united with you in heaven,” he told her family members.

Rosaleen McDonagh

A poem read out during the service described Rosie as a “beautiful little angel” with eyes as bright as diamonds who adored her family.

After the funeral, the girl’s white coffin was carried away from the church in a horse drawn white carriage.

The coffin was taken on for burial at St Joseph’s cemetery in Mountmellick.

The death of Rosie came in a seven-day period that saw 12 people lose their lives on Ireland’s roads.

Seven of those were killed in two crashes, both in Co Tipperary.

As of Sunday evening, 127 had died on the roads in 2023 – a rise of 23 on the same period last year.

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