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Funeral for woman after three-car crash

The funeral of a woman who died in a three-vehicle road traffic collision in Co Down is due to take place today.

The 52-year-old victim, named locally as Michelle Clarke (nee Hamilton), was prounced dead at the scene of the crash last week.

It happened on the Belfast Road, Saintfield, at around 6pm on Thursday, July 6, and involved a Mini, a Mercedes and a Mitsubishi Outlander.

A service of thanksgiving will be held at Kilmore Presbyterian Church at 11am today, followed by burial in the adjoining graveyard. In lieu of flowers, her family has requested donations for Compassion UK and Marie Curie.

A death notice read that she "will be remembered by her husband and the entire family circle". It added: "Leaning on the everlasting arms."

She is survived by husband Martin, mother Margaret and sisters Roberta and Cathy.

Rowallane councillor Terry Andrews described the collision as "an awful, heartbreaking tragedy for everyone involved".

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"My heart goes out to the family of the poor woman who died so tragically," he said.

"I want to offer my heartfelt sympathies and condolences to them. Words cannot describe what they must be going through at this most difficult of times.

"The thoughts and prayers of the whole local community will be with them. I'm so sorry for their loss. God love them."

A man was taken to the Ulster Hospital in Dundonald for treatment to his injuries following last week's crash.

Police are continuing to appeal for witnesses to come forward with information.

A PSNI spokesman said: "We would ask anyone who had been travelling on the Belfast Road and saw any of these vehicles to contact police at Downpatrick on the non-emergency number 101."

The death brings to 29 the total number of people who have died on Northern Ireland's roads this year.

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