A two-year-old toddler collapsed and died after choking on a piece of food at a creche.
The little boy was being cared for at the local creche in Ballinderreen, Co Galway, yesterday afternoon when he got into difficulties while being fed.
It is understood a piece of food became lodged in his throat and staff rushed to his aid in an attempt to dislodge it.
An ambulance was called and arrived at the creche within minutes. The little boy was rushed to University Hospital Galway but despite sustained attempts at resuscitation he was pronounced dead.
The child's parents were abroad on a short break in the Netherlands and were notified of the tragedy. Last night they were returning home.
The child was being cared for in the parents' absence by his extended family.
All were said to be shocked and deeply traumatised by the child's death in such tragic circumstances.
Staff at the creche were said to be devastated at the tragedy. The facility caters for young children, from babies of a few months old to older children using it for after-school care.
Gardai at Gort, who attended the scene, said they were treating the incident as a tragic accident.