GoFundMe raises almost €400k for kids who lost both parents in car crash

Patrick Grimley and his wife Ciera passed away seven days apart following a crash on the Gosford Road in Markethill in the early hours of Saturday, November 4.

Patrick Grimley and family

Steven Moore

A fund set up to support three children whose parents died after an horrific road crash three weeks ago has raised over £340,000 (€393,295).

Patrick Grimley and his wife Ciera passed away seven days apart following a crash on the Gosford Road in Markethill, Co Armagh, in the early hours of Saturday, November 4.

Their close friend, Ciara McElvanna, who had also been out with the couple celebrating Patrick’s 40th birthday in Dundalk earlier that evening, passed away several days after the collision.

A GoFundMe page set up by the extended Grimley family to help support Patrick and Ciera’s children had reached £344,000 as of last Saturday.

More than 6,700 people and a number of companies have donated to the cause, which has struck a chord with people from all over Ireland.

More than 60 people and businesses made donations of over £1,000, with the largest being made anonymously earlier this week for £4,000.

Many have donated £10 or £20, while hundreds of people have handed over three-figure sums.

The extended Grimley family set up the GoFundMe to help support Patrick and Ciera’s three children Tadhg, Mya and Cadhla.

Lorraine Grimley, whose husband is Patrick’s uncle, posted the fundraiser last Sunday night with the goal of raising £10,000.

But before the GoFundMe had been set up, the family – who are steeped in the GAA – received a kind-hearted gesture from across the community.

Worshippers from a Protestant church in Darkley handed over money they had collected for the family.

Protestants from the Mountain Lodge Pentecostal Church last week commemorated the 40th anniversary of the Darkley Massacre in which the INLA shot dead three and wounded seven in a sectarian attack. Harold Browne, Victor Cunningham and David Wilson, all members of the church, died in the attack on November 20, 1983.

Lorraine Grimley told the Sunday World: “They had their own massacre, they had a remembrance and they had a collection for the Grimleys at it.

“They had a collection for the Grimley family while remembering their own loss at the same time.

“Madden is a close-knit community. All the churches have been sending us money and all the local schools and local groups we mightn’t be affiliated with, they have all come together and they have been amazing.

“This is the best cross-community work you will ever see.”

Lorraine also thanked everyone who made donations on social media this week, saying: “On behalf of the family, can I thank each and every one of you for your donations to this fund. The response has been amazing and your generosity will not be forgotten.

“We can never replace what we have lost but knowing that people care really eases the burden.

“Some people don’t like to use GoFundMe so please contact me if you wish to donate in another way. If you’re not in a position to donate, please pray and remember all the people affected by this tragedy.”

To make a donation, log on to https://www.gofundme.com/f/patrick-and-cieras-children.

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