SUDDEN DEATHS of two young men in Shannon have rippled across the entire community.

Huge crowds attended the funerals of Luke Shea and Conor Loughnane in Shannon on Friday and Saturday respectively with the town rocked by the deaths of two young men within a matter of hours on Tuesday last.

Speaking at the funeral mass of Conor Loughnane on Saturday morning, Fr Arnold Rosney referenced the amount of young people that have died in the locality. “We’ve had so many deaths since All Souls’ Day on November 2nd, so many young people. It feels like our community is stuck in a valley of tears”.

Luke, a talented soccer player who lined out at full-back for his county when representing the Clare Youths, was a member of Shannon Town Utd, having previously played for both Bridge Utd and Newmarket Celtic.

A spokesperson for Shannon Town Utd said they were “deeply saddened at the devastating news and loss”. The statement added, “You brought joy on and off the pitch. Always an encouraging voice, and one to lift others up when down. An absolute pleasure to share the pitch with. A position that cannot be filled! There are far more important things than football and you are truly missed and loved by all of us”.

From Líos na Rí in Shannon, Luke (20) is survived by his heartbroken family, parents Steve and Caroline, brother Scott, nanas Kathleen and Carole, aunts, uncles, cousins, neighbours and his many friends.

At Friday’s funeral service, a letter Luke left to his family and friends was read aloud to the congregation at St John and Paul’s Church. He described his “beautiful parents” Steve and Caroline as the “best parents that anyone could ask for” who “have given me so much in my lifetime that I will be forever grateful”.

He expressed his love for his brother Scott, his unconditional love for his girlfriend Ali “the most beautiful girl I could ever know” and told his friends that the memories they formed will always live on in his heart.

Large crowds also gathered for the funeral of Conor Loughnane at St John and Paul’s Church on Saturday. The thirty nine year old had been working at Ei Electronics at the time of his death. His loss is deeply regretted by his heartbroken parents, Mary and Ger, his brother Barry, his adored nephews Harry and Aaron and niece Neila.

Barry and Ger Loughnane lead the coffin out of the church.

Two-time All-Ireland winning Clare manager, Ger Loughnane when beginning to speak on Saturday remarked, “Usually when I came up here in the past, there was a gang of young lads in front of me for communion or confirmation. It’s a big change today but that is life”. The former school principal acknowledged the empathy and discretion shown by Gardaí during the week. He admitted he was struck by how “absolutely brilliant” Conor’s friends had been, “the stories told at the wake gave me a totally different perspective”. He was “an expert” on films and television and always knew the right recommendation for his parents, indeed Ger quoted a passage from the 1992 film, ‘A River Runs Through It’ during the mass.

Conor had been a ‘junior waterboy’ for Clare’s hurlers in 1995 alongside Kenny McNamara while their elder brothers Barry Loughnane and Conor McNamara were ‘senior waterboys’. Conor had been booked on the sideline by one official for bringing water onto the two Lohan brothers, Brian and Frank who were pivotal figures of the Banner defence.

On the night of Clare’s historic All-Ireland win in 1995, the quartet had been unable to gain access to the bar so hatched a plan that they would order room service to their room where four large glasses of coke on a tray heading in the direction of one room were spotted by selector Mike McNamara, he later recounted the story to Loughnane.

Teachers of Conor at primary and secondary level would have been surprised with the “veracious appetite” he developed for reading after he left school, Ger outlined. A sense of adventure also became evident with trips to New York City and Australia in his twenties. Ger spoke of the drama that ensued when Conor lost his passport and had to use a fake ID in the States, leading to him coming across the radar of homeland security. On a fishing escapade to Darwin after pulling in a catch, Conor was fortunate when a Chinese man on board jumped on a sea snake to save him.

“During all those adventures, that insidious grip of addiction began to tighten on Conor but when he came home he was in great form, he had a great adventure,” Ger stated.

An incident from July 2017 where Conor was arrested and later pleaded guilty to assaulting a garda, obstructing a garda and possession of cocaine, was described by Ger as “an awful occurrence in Shannon”. Comments from the District Court judge in March 2018 impacted Conor, Ger said, “The report was totally and utterly erroneous, it had a terrible impact on him. The judge was one of these political lackies who was given the job for helping a politician out”.

After this, Conor began working at Ei Electronics, “he loved it, he never missed a day’s work and we all thought he was on the right road until last Tuesday,” Feakle native Ger added. “There is no understanding and there is no need for understanding, we always did his best and Conor always did his best. He has met up with Bridget and all those that we loved that have went before us, he is at peace”.

When life is difficult, Samaritans are here – day or night, 365 days a year. You can call them for free on 116 123, email them at jo@samaritans.ie, or visit www.samaritans.ie to find your nearest branch.

Related News

damien carmody 1
Damien Carmody memorial tournament to honour a man who loved the GAA & the land
shannon airport car park 1
Cargo flight from Miami diverts to Shannon Airport
TMP_3810
Relay For Life ‘a very powerful community’ says Clare Rose Aisling
kevin corrigan mary howard samba 1-2
Ennis 2040 DAC Chief & Cllr Howard to start up samba band
Latest News
bridge utd jump 1-2
The Water Break: Bridge blaze underage trail, Manus' Munster march & Avenue eye St Michaels
damien carmody 1
Damien Carmody memorial tournament to honour a man who loved the GAA & the land
shannon airport car park 1
Cargo flight from Miami diverts to Shannon Airport
TMP_3810
Relay For Life ‘a very powerful community’ says Clare Rose Aisling
kevin corrigan mary howard samba 1-2
Ennis 2040 DAC Chief & Cllr Howard to start up samba band
Premium
Ennis Car Park Announcement 031 eamon o'dea pat dowling kieran keating deirdre murphy brian fitzpatrick
Lease arrangement with Council for Cloister car park offers 'financial assurance & certainty' for Clare GAA
uhl exterior
Preliminary assessment underway following death of teenage girl at UHL
alan troy mary howard 1
Fianna Fáil tipped to run four candidates in West Clare
sixmilebridge road parking
Man arrested & released without charge in investigation into alleged assault of boy (12)
2022 Clare Co Board Convention -9440
Clare GAA will be keeping door open for media to attend County Board meetings

Subscribe for just €3 per month

If you’re here, you care about County Clare. So do we. Did you rely on us for Covid-19 updates, follow our election coverage, or visit The Clare Echo every week for breaking news and sport? The Clare Echo invests in local journalism and we want to safeguard its future in our county. By becoming a subscriber you are supporting what we do, will receive access to all our premium articles and a better experience, while helping us improve our offering to you. Subscribe to clareecho.ie and get the first six months for just €3 a month (less than 75c per week), and thereafter €8 per month. Cancel anytime, limited time offer. T&Cs Apply. www.clareecho.ie.

Subscribe for just €3 per month

If you’re here, you care about County Clare. So do we. Did you rely on us for Covid-19 updates, follow our election coverage, or visit The Clare Echo every week for breaking news and sport? The Clare Echo invests in local journalism and we want to safeguard its future in our county. By becoming a subscriber you are supporting what we do, will receive access to all our premium articles and a better experience, while helping us improve our offering to you. Subscribe to clareecho.ie and get the first six months for just €3 a month (less than 75c per week), and thereafter €8 per month. Cancel anytime, limited time offer. T&Cs Apply. www.clareecho.ie.

Scroll to Top