Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 16 September 2014

Car-tragedy couple still don't know their unborn child and son are dead

The couple whose son and unborn child were killed in a tragic holiday crash in southern England are not aware they are dead.

Con Twomey (39) and his wife Elber (36) remain in a critical condition in Derriford Hospital outside Plymouth in Devon.

But they do not know their son Oisin (16 months) and his unborn sibling died in the wake of the collision.

It also emerged yesterday that the young Polish man who veered at high speed into the car, killing the toddler and unborn baby, had recently complained of homesickness.

The 20-year-old man, who died shortly after being rushed to hospital, had left a suicide note at his Devon home.

The Twomeys -- who have family members maintaining a round-the-clock vigil at their hospital bedside -- will only be informed of the deaths of their children when they are deemed medically fit. Oisin died shortly after being rushed to hospital by air-ambulance.

Doctors conducted emergency surgery on Elber -- who was five months' pregnant -- in a bid to save her unborn child.

However, the baby did not survive the procedure.

British police were concerned for the young Polish man's wellbeing before the crash, after being alerted by a friend who had read the suicide note.

But just minutes before police could intercept the man's Vauxhall Vectra car outside Torquay, he veered directly into the VW Golf carrying the Irish family.

The Pole -- whose car was not being chased -- ploughed into the Twomeys' vehicle within sight of a Devon police officer.

Devon police confirmed they are not treating the crash as a straightforward accident. Police are now awaiting toxicology test results on the young man -- and are also conducting a detailed check into his state of mind.

Last night, the Twomey family declined to comment further. Con's mother, Julia, had earlier asked for public prayers for her son and daughter-in-law. "We need all the prayers we can get. We are hoping and praying that they will pull through -- but our hearts are broken," she said.

A special Mass was staged in Rockchapel last night for their recovery. Newmarket parish priest Fr Dave Herlihy -- who married the couple -- will travel to the UK tomorrow and visit Derriford Hospital. "It is just devastating what has happened to them. The level of shock is immense," Fr Herlihy said.

He said the couple were devoted to each other, their child and their families. "Elber has a fabulous personality. She is a warm and infectious character just like Con," he said.

Meanwhile a 15-year-old girl suffered internal injuries after a collision. The incident, involving two vehicles, occurred on the N3 near Bailieborough in Cavan at around lunchtime yesterday.

Four passengers in one car and a single male driving a jeep were all taken to hospital.

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