€80,000 raised for Buncrana family hit by drowning tragedy

Michelle Black and Martin McGranaghan fundraising effort from Ireland to New York

Sean McGrotty, who was in his late 40s, his two sons Mark (12) and Evan (8), and the boys’ granny Ruth Daniels (59) died alongside Mrs Daniels’ daughter Jodi-Lee (14)

Sean McGrotty, who was in his late 40s, his two sons Mark (12) and Evan (8), and the boys’ granny Ruth Daniels (59) died alongside Mrs Daniels’ daughter Jodi-Lee (14)

 

Two people have raised €80,000 to help the relatives of those who died in last Sunday’s drownings in Co Donegal.

Michelle Black from Buncrana and Martin McGranaghan from Derry met for the first time Friday, five days on from the tragic accident which left a family devastated by the loss of five people.

Sean McGrotty, who was in his late 40s, his two sons Mark (12) and Evan (8), and the boys’ granny Ruth Daniels (59) died alongside Mrs Daniels’ daughter Jodi-Lee (14).

They drowned when the family’s Audi jeep slid on algae on the slipway at Buncrana pier last Sunday evening.

Michelle and Martin were both so touched by what happened that they decided to try to raise money to help Louise James, mother of Mark and Evan, whose two sons, her partner Sean, her mother Ruth and sister Jodi-Lee died in the tragedy.

Her four month old baby Rioghnach-Ann was rescued from the sinking vehicle by Donegal man Davitt Walsh.

Trauma

Said Michelle: “I have four children myself and it really affected me and I know it really affected the people of Buncrana. The town has been almost silent for the past week.

“Everyone says that you can’t find words to describe such a tragedy but I felt I could do something else and help the family in some other way.

“People have responded so generously.”

Martin said the response to his appeal had been incredible. “I didn’t want Louise worrying about anything so I started by asking for £5,000 in donations and it’s now over £45,000.

“There are no words to describe the generosity of each and everyone of the people who has donated,” he said.

“I am completely overwhelmed. People have done an amazing thing for this family and I know the messages of support will be of comfort to them over the next few weeks and months.”

A fundraiser took place in New York during the week to add another €10,000 to the fund, bringing the total to around £69,000, or €85,000.

You can donate here.