Boy (5) killed in car crash with father was ‘kind and gentle’

Funeral held in Portlaoise of Sully and Vincent Rossi who died in Co Offaly last week

A five-year-old-boy killed alongside his father in a car crash last week was described in his final school report read aloud during his funeral as caring and energetic.

"Sully Rossi is a beautiful friendly boy; we just love him because he is kind and gentle," his grandmother Mary read from the report received just days ago and which, she told those gathered at St Peter and St Paul's Church in Portlaoise, Co Laois on Tuesday morning, described him perfectly.

The child died last Monday with his father Vincent when their car collided with a truck in Tullamore, Co Offaly.

Mr Rossi's daughter Hayley (9) remains in the care of Our Lady's Children's Hospital in Crumlin, Dublin. His son Daniel (8) was also injured but later discharged from hospital.


On Tuesday, the remains of Mr Rossi and his young son were wheeled side-by-side to the altar of the church where a large bunch of cartoon balloons was placed in front of Sully’s small white coffin.

“He seeks out the needs of other children and helps them. He has a very creative mind and can think of great games to play,” his grandmother read from the report.

“All the boys and girls enjoy playing with Sully and sometimes there is a queue at lunchtime to sit beside him.”

Sully was remembered for his love of dressing up as a superhero, climbing trees, dancing and riding on his balance bike.

“Most of all,” the report concluded, “the reason we all love Sully is because he is always smiling and laughing.”

She said her son Vincent had been “many things to many people but most of all he is loved”.

Hayley Rossi was watching the funeral service over a live webcast and was told by parish priest Monsignor John Byrne: "Hayley please know that everyone here loves you and is praying for you."

Mark Hilliard

Mark Hilliard

Mark Hilliard is a reporter with The Irish Times