TRIBUTES have been paid to a teacher who died following a collision in Dungloe, Co. Donegal.
Dawn Croke, who was in her 30s, died after she was struck by a car at Chapel Road at 6.30pm on Thursday.
A six-year-old girl who was injured in the incident has been taken to Letterkenny University Hospital.
The Irish Times reports that Ms Croke saved the child’s life by pushing her out of the way after a parked vehicle travelled forward towards them.
Ms Croke, a mother-of-two, was a PE and Recourse teacher at Rosses Community School in Dungloe.
The school today paid tribute to Ms Croke, describing her as a ‘wonderful teacher’.
“Our school community wish to offer our sincerest condolences on the tragic death of our colleague and friend, Ms Dawn Croke,” they said in a statement.
“We offer our condolences to her father and staff member Tony Croke, his wife Anne, our student Emily, past pupils Aaron, Ethan and Adam, her partner Patrick, and her sons Jason and Calum on the sad passing of our wonderful teacher and friend Ms Dawn Croke.
“Our school wish to send our love and support to the family, school and local community at this sad time.
“We, the school community, remember with love and fondness our colleague Dawn. We pray for the family and friends at this sad time.”
Pat Gallagher, Fianna Fáil TD for Donegal and a friend of Ms Croke’s, said the community was in shock.
“Dawn Croke was an exceptionally gifted individual with a massive personality and warmth that radiated from her on each occasion you met her,” he posted on Facebook.
“I knew Dawn well, she is a member of a well-known and much respected Dungloe family, just last month in December she visited me in Dáil Éireann with a class from Rosses Community School, she later brought the class to meet Brother Kevin Crowley and visit the homeless centre in Dublin to present a cheque of €1,000, which she and the class had successfully raised for the charity.”
He added: “There is a deep sense of shock and disbelief within our community that such a freak and tragic accident occurred, and the cloud of sadness is even greater when it has taken the life of one that had contributed so much to our community and that was so widely loved and respected by all those who knew her and worked with her.”
Ms Croke’s funeral will be held on Monday, January 14 at 11am in St Crona’s Church, Dungloe with burial afterwards in Maghery cemetery.