Gaelic club colleagues of young Derry man Ciaran Feeney have paid tribute to the “gentle soul” ahead of his funeral on Wednesday.
Friends at St Mary’s Slaughtmanus Gaelic Athletic Club spoke of how Ciaran had attended a club fun day just hours before his death.
The 21-year-old from Tamnaherin is believed to have been returning home on foot when he was struck by a car.
The accident happened along the Glenshane Road, close to the junction with Drumahoe Road at 1.50am on Sunday.
He will be laid to rest following Requiem Mass at St Mary’s Church, Faughanvale at 11am on Wednesday.
In a statement, St Mary’s Slaughtmanus GAC said:
“Ciaran Feeney is a local lad who has been a member of this club for a long time; he played football at all levels from Underage to Reserve.”
A club spokesman said he had been a “popular young man within the club” and “a constant supporter at all our events”.
“It is poignant to note that Ciaran with his friends was at our fun day on Saturday past,” he added. “The Club would like to take this opportunity to extend our deepest heartfelt sympathy at this terrible time to Ciaran’s family and close circle of friends.
“Mary queen of Gaels pray for Ciaran and his family and may his young gentle soul rest in peace.”
Local priest Fr Patrick Mullan said Ciaran’s mother Marie had been left shattered, while it is understood the young man’s brother, who had been living in Australia, has been making his way home for the funeral.
Fr Mullan said: “It is terrible, dreadful. Everyone is stunned. I have been in contact with his mother and she is devastated.
“He lived with his mother and she depended on him so much. He was a very, very good son to her, very supportive. He was due to go on holidays in the coming days as well.”
SDLP Councillor for the area Jim McKeever, meanwhile, said everyone’s thoughts and prayers were with the popular young man’s family.
“The community is in a state of shock,” he said. “This is news no family would want to get. Too many young people have been killed like that.”
Police have appealed for anyone who was in the area at the time of the accident, anyone who witnessed the collision or anyone who saw a young man wearing a grey hooded top and blue jeans walking along the footpath or road to contact them on the non-emergency telephone number 101.