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Donegal crash victim was Derry mum-of-three

By Donna Deeney

Published 23/09/2016

The scene of the fatal accident
The scene of the fatal accident

A 38-year-old mother-of-three from Londonderry who was one of two women who died in a crash in Co Donegal has been described as a "dedicated mother."

Requiem Mass for Maria Wallis will take place tomorrow at the Church of Mary Immaculate in Stranorlar.

Father John Joe Doherty asked for prayers for both Ms Wallis and 19-year-old Kiara Baird, from Co Dublin, who died at the scene of the crash on Wednesday afternoon.

A man in his 40s was taken to Letterkenny hospital for treatment for injuries not believed to be life-threatening.

Ms Wallis, who is originally from the Top of the Hill area of Derry, leaves behind three sons aged 17, 14 and 13.

Her remains were brought to her mother's home in Blue Ceders, Stranorlar, from Letterkenny hospital following a post-mortem examination.

Fr Doherty, who had known Ms Wallis for four years, said it was a difficult time for everyone.

"Maria was a dedicated mother and that was obvious to anyone who knew her," he added.

"She was blessed with her sons and the love they shared for one another.

"This is a difficult time for both families of this tragedy, which has left so many people devastated.

"This is yet another reminder of how fragile life is, and I would ask everyone to pray for all of the bereaved."

Donegal Sinn Fein councillor Gary Doherty said the entire community would rally around the boys in the days, weeks and months ahead.

"My own son shares a classroom with Maria's youngest boy," he added. "This is an awful tragedy for the community and our thoughts are with Maria's family here in Donegal and in Derry."

The cause of the collision on the Glenties Road, just outside Ballybofey, has not been established, but conditions at the time were poor, with heavy rain potentially affecting the road.

Garda investigating the cause of the single-vehicle crash were waiting to question the man who was in the car with the women. Officers have also appealed for witnesses to come forward.

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