tragic loss | 

Tributes to 'beautiful' Sophia Melnychuk (3) who died after being hit by bus in horror accident

A GoFundMe page that has been set up to help her family has raised more than €22,000

Sophia Melnychuk (3) Pic from GoFundMe

Neil Fetherstonhaugh and Conor Feehan

The tragic tot who died after she was hit by a bus in Co Tipperary has been named locally as Sophia Melnychuk (3).

A GoFundMe page that has been set up to help her family following the horrific accident in the Castle Heights housing estate at around 4pm yesterday, has so far raised more than €22,000.

It is understood Sophia was playing near her home when the accident happened.

She was pronounced dead a short time later.

The bus driver was treated at the scene by ambulance personnel while gardaí are appealing for witnesses to the accident to come forward.

A GoFundMe page called ‘Sophia’s Farewell’ and set up by friends of her family states: “On Tuesday the 13th of April our family friends Andre, Maria, Maxsum and Denis lost their beautiful little daughter and sister Sophia Melnychuk who was only three years old in a tragic accident.

“I live in Carrick on Suir my who (sic) life and have never seen such despair or been apart (sic) of such heartbreak for a family, they are devastated and cannot believe there (sic) little girl Sophia is gone forever.

Tributes at the scene of the tragedy

“We have been close friends with this family along (sic) time and want to support them anyway we can and as best we can.

"We have set up this go fund me to support the family financially to help with Sophia's funeral and other costs.

“This tragedy has shocked the town and all the people of Carrick on Suir and I hope all of you reading this will want to help and support this beautiful family through this heartbreak (sic) time."

Cllr David Dunne, who is from the town, said he didn't know the family well but that he would have helped them out with council business in the past.

“This is an awful tragedy, it’s after affecting everybody.

“Our hearts go out to the family, and all the people affected, the first responders, the bus driver, everybody.”

Cllr Dunne said: “The community will rally behind the family and they're already over there helping out, I know that for a fact. The neighbours are helping out and offering support.

"We won't be found wanting, I mean the people of Carrick-on-Suir won’t be found wanting, it’s that sort of community.

"When tragedy hits we do rally around and we will rally around this family.”

He added: “My heart goes out to the family and to everyone affected by this terrible tragedy. We will rally behind, everybody in the community will rally behind them and we’re there for them.”

Gardaí issued an appeal yesterday for any witnesses or for anyone with information in relation to the incident to come forward.

They are also appealing for any road users who may have camera footage (including dash-cam) who were in the housing estate at the time of the collision, to make this footage available to gardaí.

“A female child (3 years old) was fatally injured during the collision,” gardai said.

“Her body has been removed from the scene to the mortuary in South Tipperary General Hospital where a post mortem will take place in due course. The male bus driver was treated by emergency services at scene.

“Anyone with information is asked to contact Clonmel Garda Station on 052 6177640, the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111, or any Garda station."

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