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Joshua Kelly (6) who died after being knocked down to be laid to rest

By Allan Preston

Published 23/01/2016

Mum Clare Kelly with little Joshua
Mum Clare Kelly with little Joshua

The funeral of a six-year-old boy who died after being knocked down will be held in Portaferry today.

Mourners gathered yesterday for the wake for Joshua Kelly.

The Kelly family - Joshua's parents Clare and Michael and younger sister Saoirse - said in a statement the little boy had "died tragically as the result of an accident."

They added that he would be "lovingly remembered and greatly missed by his sorrowing Mummy and Daddy and all the Kelly and Prior family circle".

Joshua was struck by a car just outside his house on the Scrabo Road in Newtownards on Wednesday around 3pm.

He attended the nearby St Finian's Primary School, but it is understood he was off with a temperature.

It is believed that the youngster was knocked down while running across the road to greet his grandmother.

The funeral cortege will leave Ashmount Park in Portaferry at 12.30pm, going to St Patrick's Church in Ballyphilip for Requiem Mass at 1pm, with burial in the adjoining graveyard.

A Just Giving page has been set up to support the family, and as of yesterday evening almost £800 had been raised thanks to donations from around 60 people.

Encouraging contributions, the Glen Community Church in Newtownards said: "As we reflect our church family's purpose, may we be generous in this love as we respond to the need of this hurting family."

Joshua's principal at St Finian's Primary School, Barry Coulter, described Joshua as a "beautiful, kind little boy" whose "smile could light up any room".

The Scrabo Residents Association has been campaigning for years over traffic levels on Scrabo Road.

It said in a statement: "We have met many times with local councillors, MLAs, our local MP, the Roads Service and the principal of the Model School regarding these problems, , and we will continue pressing for these matters to be resolved."

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