Sanjeev Chada was the perfect picture of the devoted father.
He brought his sons to and from school, made them lunch when they got home, and encouraged their involvement in the local GAA club, supporting them from the sidelines as they donned the blue and yellow of the local team.
Known as 'Sanj' in the village of Ballinkillen, Co Carlow, he was a stay-at-home-dad while his wife Kathleen commuted to Dublin where she works as a nurse in a fertility clinic.
He was set to take his sons Eoghan and Ruairi on a treat to a bowling alley in Carlow town on Sunday night when the plans took a devastating and tragic turn.
Locals in the hamlet were last night mystified at the circumstances of the death of the couple's two little boys, whose bodies were found in a crashed car, driven by Mr Chada, in Westport, Co Mayo.
The village, little more than a church, the local GAA pitch and clubhouse, and a scattering of houses, is home to less than 100 people.
Family gathered at the home of the boys' maternal grandparents William and Patsy Murphy when the devastating news that they were dead reached Ballinkillen just before 4pm.
Locals expressed their shock with one woman, whose children share a classroom with one of the boys, saying: "We can't even take in what's happened yet."