accidental collision | 

The traumatic death of camogie player Kate Moran is ‘testing people’s faith’, says priest

Candles are lit for at the vigil for Kate Moran. Picture: Ray Ryan

Eavan Murray

The death of camogie player Kate Moran following an accidental collision during a match is such a profoundly tragic loss it is “testing people’s faith”, a priest said last night.

As further details of the freak accident emerge, the Irish Independent can reveal that Ms Moran’s father Cathal witnessed the incident during a league game between Athenry and Ardrahan on Monday evening.

It is understood Ms Moran was accidentally struck by the backswing of a hurl below the base of her helmet.

Last night, hundreds of mourners attended the Moran family home in Monivea to pay their respects to the third-year NUIG commerce student.

The 20-year-old will be laid to rest this morning in Athenry, just 10 days before what should have been her 21st birthday.

Due to the traumatic nature of the accident, Galway Camogie County Board is providing counselling to the players and match officials who witnessed it.

Kate, the eldest of four children of Cathal and Mary Moran, who run a successful auctioneering business in Athenry, will be laid to rest today as the Galway sporting community attempts to come to terms with her death.

She is also survived by her boyfriend of five years, TJ Brennan, who is a member of the Galway senior hurling team, and by her grandparents Bridie Moran and Amelia Murphy.

Parish priest of Athenry, Fr Benny McHale, told the Irish Independent the devastating nature of the tragedy to her family and loved ones is so tragic it “is certainly testing people’s faith.”

“I’ve never in all my years seen such a veil of sorrow and shock enveloping the whole community,” he said.

“Kate really was such a beautiful person. People often say that when somebody dies, but she genuinely was very ­special.

“She had lots of interests, and she was a very bubbly person. She was a very well-balanced girl between her studies, her boyfriend and her camogie.

“Her mother told me she saved up and bought her own car, so she was independent and resourceful.

“The younger players on the team are very upset. She was a mentor to them, which was just another lovely aspect of her personality.

“What can anyone say? It’s such a tragedy. It’s certainly testing people’s faith.

“People are asking why. Why did it happen? And why Kate? There is no answer to it.

“And the accident itself was such a freak thing.

“I don’t know how many thousands came together for her vigil, but it has had an amazing community impact. People are truly heartbroken this has befallen such decent and great people.

“As you would expect, they are angry and sad and questioning why them and why Kate.

“I wish there was some answer I could give them.”

Ms Moran’s funeral mass will take place today at 1pm at the Church of the Sacred Heart, Ryehill, Monivea, Co Galway.

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