Over £75k raised for Louise, Rioghnach-Ann

The poem to JodieLee, Ruth, Evan, Mark and Sam read out in remembrance at the vigil in Dungiven on Sunday night for the victims of the Buncrana tragedy. INLV1316-599KDR
The poem to JodieLee, Ruth, Evan, Mark and Sam read out in remembrance at the vigil in Dungiven on Sunday night for the victims of the Buncrana tragedy. INLV1316-599KDR

Fundraising efforts continued over the weekend to support Louise James and her baby daughter, Rioghnach-Ann, following the tragedy in Buncrana last week which claimed the lives of five members of their family.

In excess of £75,000 has been raised via two Justgiving websites, with thousands more donated through local fundraising initiatives and events as far afield as New York.

Derry man Marty McGranaghan, who set up one of the two Justgiving pages raising money for Louise and her family, said he had never seen a reaction to an appeal like it.

“I set out to try and raise £5,000 - and I thought it would take the full 30 days of the appeal to raise it. But we have just been completely overwhelmed by the reaction of the public.

“I don’t think there is anyone who hasn’t been touched by this tragedy in some way.”

Marty revealed he met with Louise at the weekend. “She gave me a big hug and told me thank you, but I told her this wasn’t me. This was everyone in this city coming together to help.”

Michelle Black, whose Justgiving page in Buncrana has raised just short of £19,000 said donations have been coming in from all over the world.

“We’ve had donations from all over Ireland, from England, from Scotland, from Australia and from Canada.

“I never expected it to be this big but I think people don’t know what to say or do. We know it can’t change anything - it can’t bring her family back. It’s nothing more than a token really to show that we are all thinking of Louise and supporting her.”

Two Justgiving Pages are still available for donations and will be open through the next month. Additionally a number of local businesses have been raising funds throughout the city and collection tins are still in place.