Sorrow as John Joe (11) is laid to rest

February 20, 2017

Mourners at the funeral of 11-year-old John Joe Toner in Clady on Friday heard the occasion described as “one of the saddest days Clady’s ever seen”.

John Joe passed away in Belfast Children’s Hospital on Tuesday last, having taken suddenly ill while at school on Friday 9th February.  It is believed the young pupil may have suffered a heart attack.

Celebrating requiem Mass, Fr. Malachy Murphy offered the family’s appreciation for everyone throughout the parish and beyond who prayed for John Joe.

“People were praying that he would get better, but the family realise that those prayers will carry them through his death and they say they have been of great comfort. They are also very thankful for the care he received from the paramedics and at the Children’s Ward at the Royal Victoria Hospital,” he said.

John Joe’s family asked for donations to the Clark Clinic at the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children in lieu of flowers.

Principal of St. Malachy’s PS, Mr Justin Toner described John Joe as a “special boy who made an immeasurable contribution to school and parish life”.

“He was a talented footballer, a choir member and dedicated altar server,” he added. “He brought a smile to everyone who met him.

“His passing will leave a huge void in the lives of all who knew him,” he said.