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Community in shock as nurse killed

FRIENDS of a mother of seven killed in a horrific road crash in west Belfast said today her death was "a tragic waste of life".

FRIENDS of a mother of seven killed in a horrific road crash in west Belfast said today her death was "a tragic waste of life".

A 23-year-old man was today due in court on a number of motoring offences linked to Maureen Sheehan's death.

Mrs Sheehan was a member of the board of governors at St Teresa's Nursery School on the Glen Road. Its principal Ann Diamond today said her contribution over the five years of its existence had been immense.

"It's just a tragic waste of life. That someone so special should be killed so tragically is just heartbreaking.

"Maureen did an awful lot of work for St Teresa's and was a great support for all of the staff here. We are devastated and still trying to come to terms with her death.

"She was just a lovely and lively person who always seemed to have time for everyone else.

This morning floral tributes hung from traffic lights on the Falls Road where the accident happened.

At the family home in Coolnasilla Avenue off the Glen Road, friends called to pay their respects.

Mrs Sheehan, a nurse, had just completed her regular house visits and was on her way to Sunday morning Mass at St Peter's Cathedral at the time.

The man due to appear before Belfast Magistrates Court is charged with a series of offences including dangerous driving causing death.

He is also charged with driving while unfit, driving while disqualified, having no insurance, failing to stop at an accident, failing to report an accident and failing to remain at the scene. Three vehicles were badly damaged in the crash, which happened shortly before 9am near North Howard Street.

SDLP Assembly member Dr Joe Hendron, who worked with Mrs Sheehan at the Albert Street medical clinic, paid tribute to her as "a lovely person and an outstanding nurse".

"She was held in the greatest regard and it will be a terrible loss not only for her family but for the entire community."

Two of Mrs Sheehan's seven sons are priests in the Down and Connor Diocese, including her son Michael, parish priest in the Markets area of Belfast.

Meanwhile, the driver of a car stolen from Belfast on Friday night who died in a crash on the Dundrum Road near Newcastle on Saturday morning was named as Patrick Frederick McAlorum (23) of Spamount Street, north Belfast.

A 19-year-old passenger in the car was injured was last night described as stable in hospital in Downpatrick.

Belfast Telegraph