Kanturk shootings: Community ‘enveloped’ in darkness, funeral hears

ireland
Gardaí at the scene in Assolas, Kanturk, Co Cork, where the bodies of Tadgh O’Sullivan, and his two sons, Diarmuid and Mark, were found on Monday. Photo: Niall Carson/PA
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By Cate McCurry, PA

A community in Co Cork has been enveloped in darkness after three family members died in a suspected murder-suicide shooting at their home, a funeral has heard.

The funeral of Tadgh O’Sullivan and his son Diarmuid was taking place on Friday afternoon.

Tadgh and his sons Diarmuid and Mark died on Monday at their family home near Kanturk over what is understood to be a tragedy caused by a dispute over an inheritance.

Mark’s funeral will be held separately on Saturday.

Tadgh O’Sullivan, who was found dead along with two sons, Diarmuid and Mark, at a property at Assolas, Kanturk, Co Cork in the northeast of the county, in what is being treated as a suspected murder suicide Photo: Family/An Garda Síochana/PA

Fr Toby Bluitt, the parish priest of Kanturk, told mourners gathered at St Mary’s Church in Castlemagner, that there are “no answers” to the tragic events that unfolded earlier this week.

Fr Bluitt said that the father and son had touched many lives.

He added that Tadgh and Diarmuid’s lives and deaths have changed all who knew them adding, that they will “never be the same again”.

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“Grief is never an easy burden to bear and never more so when it comes to us in what can only be described as an untimely, shocking and tragic way,” he said.

“We gather in such grief today, carrying a burden that not only seems to be, but in fact is, overwhelming.

“The normally tranquil local area blanketed at this time of year with a myriad of colourful autumn leaves became a hive of activity and the autumn light was, for a time, a very distant memory.

“The shock, the numbness, the devastation, was impossible to imagine and the unfolding news of the loss of three lives was incomprehensible.

“Tadgh O’Sullivan worked in the motor trade locally for over 40 years.

“From my own encounters with him, I always found him to be very accommodating, friendly and happy in his chosen field.

“Diarmuid attended school in Ballyhass and Kanturk like his older brother Mark, and also socialised in Castlemagner.

“He went on to study accountancy at Cork Institute of Technology (CIT).

“He finished his studies last June and was due to have his conferring online next week.”

He said that CIT paid tribute to him and underlined the shock felt within the CIT community.

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Fr Bluitt said that life was full of possibilities for Diarmuid.

“One could also say that both Tadgh and Diarmuid touched many people’s lives along the way as they journeyed through life,” he added.

“Their lives and deaths have changed you all and you will never be the same again.

“So today, gathered together in our grief, we do not minimise the loss of their lives by trying to provide easy answers.

“Because there are no answers.

“But there are some things that we do know in the midst of our grief.

“We gather to make sense of the senseless.”

A view of the farmhouse in Assolas, Kanturk, Co Cork, where the bodies of Tadgh O’Sullivan, and his two sons, Diarmuid and Mark, were found. Photo: Niall Carson/PA

The father and son will be buried at St Brigid’s Cemetery.

Mark’s will take place at the Church of the Immaculate Conception in Kanturk on Saturday.

The service is to be live streamed.

Mark (26) was discovered in the family home, while Diarmuid, a 23-year-old student, was found dead alongside his father in a field 500 metres away from the family home.

All three had suffered gunshot wounds.

A detailed 12-page note was found on the body of Diarmuid, which gardaí are examining for further evidence.

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Gardaí have indicated they are not looking for anyone else in relation to the incident.

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They were alerted to an incident at around 6.30am on Monday after Tadgh’s wife, and the mother of the two men, Ann raised the alarm that firearms may have been discharged at her home.

In a funeral notice, Mark was described as the beloved son of his heartbroken mother.

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