Mother appeals for help in paying for funeral of three sons

Family of twins killed by brother who took his own life face funeral bill of €13,000

A mother of six who buried three of her sons after one of them killed the other two and then took his own life has appealed for help as she and her family struggle to meet a €13,000 funeral bill.

Co Cork-based parents of six Helen and Tom O'Driscoll lost their sons in September when twins Paddy and Tom Tom (9) were stabbed to death at their home in Charleville by their older brother Jonathan (21) who killed himself.

An emotional Ms O’Driscoll pleaded to anyone who can afford it to donate a few euro to a fund which has been set up to help them meet the costs of the triple funeral.

“I would appeal to people’s better nature, if people are able, to maybe donate a euro or two to help us through this. The bill was ready a few days after the funerals but I’m only getting around to it now,” she said.


“People asked at the time how they could help us and the family,” she said as she and her family remember Jonathan and the twins who would have celebrated their 10th birthday today (November 25th).

“It’s going to be a very hard day. It should have been a day we’d be celebrating. You never expect what happened, to happen to anyone,” said Ms O’Driscoll who has an older daughter, Bernadette, and two younger sons, Jimmy (5) and Martin (3).

Mr and Ms O'Driscoll had left their home on the Limerick Road in Charleville on September 4th to travel to Waterford to buy a miniature traditional barrel caravan when they got a call to return home urgently.

There they discovered that Paddy and Tom Tom had been stabbed to death, they then learned that the body of Jonathan had been found on the banks of the Awbeg in Buttevant 15kms away.

The three boys were mourned at a joint funeral mass at Holy Cross Church in Charleville where local curate Fr Tom Naughton reflected on how the tragedy had led to a great outpouring of sympathy and support.

After Mass, family members shouldered the twins’ two small white coffins to the local Holy Cross Cemetery over a kilometre away before returning to the the church to bring Jonathan to his final resting place in Kilmallock where he was buried with his maternal grandparents.

“We have good days and bad days.We are trying to cope as best you can,” said Ms O’Driscoll as she revealed she hasn’t been back inside the house where the twins were stabbed to death since the tragedy and is living in a mobile home in the yard behind the house.

"Thomas Snr goes in to light a candle for the twins, God speed to them, but I won't go in. It's too upsetting. I haven't just lost three children. I've lost my home as well. I'm not going in there," she said.


The O’Driscoll fund details are

AIB Account No: 23462037;

Sort Code: 93-61-89;

IBAN: 1E84AIBK93618923462037

Barry Roche

Barry Roche

Barry Roche is Southern Correspondent of The Irish Times