Tributes paid to local priest tragically killed in bus incident

The Diocese of Cork and Ross has paid tribute to Father Con Cronin
Tributes paid to local priest tragically killed in bus incident

Digital Desk Staff

Updated at 20:15

The Diocese of Cork and Ross has paid tribute to Father Con Cronin who lost his life following a traffic collision involving a bus in Monkstown, Co Cork on Tuesday.

The driver of the bus, a male aged in his 50s and from Ballincollig, Co Cork died during the incident. Fr Cronin (64) was also fatally injured.

In a statement issued by Bishop Fintan Gavin, the Diocese of Cork and Ross said it “learned with utter shock and sadness of the untimely death of Fr Con Cronin.”

“Our heartfelt thoughts and prayers go to Fr Con’s family, his wide circle of friends, parishioners and his fellow priests in the St Patrick’s Missionary Society, Kiltegan, as well as the priests of the Diocese of Cork and Ross.

“This tragic accident also leaves another family mourning the loss of a loved one, and I extend my prayerful support to his family also.”

The Diocese also expressed its wish to acknowledge the "professionalism and kindness" of the emergency services who attended the accident scene.

It said that Fr Con had served in the Harbour Parishes in Cork since 2012, establishing "a warm rapport both pastorally and personally" with all to whom he ministered and all who had contact with him.

“He will be remembered fondly for his unique sense of humour and his openness to all people." Last year Fr Cronin was one of several priests who spoke out about their daily life in a documentary for RTÉ.

As the Irish Examiner reports, it is understood the incident occurred in Monkstown in Cork Harbour when a Bus Éireann bus veered out of control and collided with several vehicles.

It is believed the bus driver also died in the incident which occurred at around 1.30pm on the Strand Road near the Bosun pub.

The bodies of both men, whose names are not being released until all next of kin are notified, have been removed to Cork University Hospital where postmortems will be carried out on Wednesday.

It is understood the passengers on the bus were not injured, however, some are badly shaken.

A child was also treated for injuries at the scene just outside Monkstown although their condition has been described as not serious.

Gardaí have closed the road between its junction with the river ferry crossing and the centre of Monkstown.

Gardaí, two units of the Cork City Fire Brigade, one unit from the Cork County Fire Service and National Ambulance Service personnel are all at the scene.

The road is expected to remain closed for some time as a forensic crash investigator will now examiner the scene.

Tragic event

In a statement, Bus Éireann confirmed that one of its vehicles was involved in the incident.

“The single-deck bus was travelling on Cork city service 216 from Monkstown to Cork University Hospital,” a spokesperson said.

“A Bus Éireann team is attending the scene.”

The company extended its deepest sympathies to the family and friends of the two people who died the collision, one of them being a long-standing and greatly valued employee based at the Capwell Depot.

“This is a very tragic event. This is a terrible and sad day for everyone at Bus Éireann, and we are all heavy-hearted,” said Stephen Kent, Chief Executive Officer, Bus Éireann. "Our thoughts are with the families and communities affected by this loss.

“We would like sincerely to thank the emergency services for all their work and assistance today and our own employees who responded at the scene.”

Bus Éireann said it will be putting in place support measures for employees impacted.

Additional reporting by Olivia Kelleher 

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