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Family and friends pay tribute to 'lovely' young Armoy man Dylan O'Kane who died in three-car smash

By Eamon Sweeney

A young man killed in a three-car collision in north Antrim was described as a "lovely young fella" by a close friend of his family.

Dylan O'Kane, who was in his 20s, died and three other men were injured in the crash on Coolkeeran Road in Armoy at around 10pm on Sunday.

Two of the three injured men have been named as cousins Paul and Martin Jamison from the village.

It is understood Mr O'Kane was travelling in a car with Paul Jamison, while Martin Jamison was in another car involved in the crash.

Bill Kennedy, who owns a filling station in Armoy, said the close-knit community had been left stunned.

"I've known the O'Kane family all my life," he said.

"I last saw Dylan and Paul Jamison about 9pm on Sunday night when they were at my garage.

"They were smiling over at me, and then it was just a short time later when I heard what happened.

"Dylan was around my shop from he was no age, looking to do odd bits and always doing his best to earn a few bob.

"It's a terrible tragedy because two of the other lads hurt are full cousins.

"Dylan was a lovely young fella, the kind that would never walk past without speaking."

Mr Kennedy added: "It's just awful news. It's so, so sad.

"You would have always seen Dylan and the other two fellas together around the village. He will be sadly missed. What more words can be used?

"Nothing will bring him back. The O'Kanes have lost their boy and that's it."

Facebook tributes to Mr O'Kane followed from friends after news of what had happened spread.

Meghan McMullan wrote: "Can't believe the news I've just woke up to. RIP Dylan O'Kane, always making us laugh in school and always spoke when I seen you. Thinking of all the family."

Another comment from Danielle Brown said: "RIP Dylan O'Kane, one of the nicest, funniest blokes I've ever known."

And Kevin Donnelly wrote: "Rest in peace Dylan O'Kane. Lots of good times with you and you were always up for a laugh. You will really be missed. Thoughts go to your family."

Mr O'Kane's grandfather Hugh, who runs a car dealership in Armoy, has been a major sponsor of the renowned Armoy Armada racing series that in years gone by attracted legendary riders such as Joey Dunlop and Mervyn Robinson.

He said: "Dylan just lived for his cars.

"He was a great young lad who kept to himself and was very well-liked. He is going to be badly missed.

"We are a big but very close family and everyone has been completely gutted by what has happened."

North Antrim DUP MLA Mervyn Storey said the O'Kane family are well-known and respected.

Expressing his sympathy, he added: "Yet again another family has been plunged into sorrow following the death of Dylan O'Kane.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with the grieving family at this time and also with the other young men involved in the incident, and I trust they will make a full recovery."

TUV councillor Sharon McKillop also expressed her sorrow.

"I know the families impacted by this tragic accident, and the family of the young man who died are particularly in my thoughts and prayers at this time.

"The community is in shock at the news of a young life lost so suddenly. I am sure they will rally around his loved ones in the days ahead."

The PSNI has appealed for witnesses to come forward.

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