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Gardaí at the scene in Kildysart where they are investigating the circumstances surrounding the deaths of a married couple. Photograph by John Kelly.

Technical examination at Kildysart tragedy scene

Post mortem examinations of the bodies of a South African couple found dead in Kildysart yesterday are taking place at University Hospital Limerick this evening.

The individuals, who died in the Shannon Estuary village on Wednesday night, have been named locally as Angelique (27) and Cornelius Billing (44).

Mrs Billing was seen collapsing in the street at approximately 6.50pm on Wednesday by a local garda, who was attending the scene of a fire. She is understood to have sustained injuries to her upper body.

Fire crew who were dealing with a fire at the hardware store across the street from where Mrs Billing collapsed came to her aid and provided medical assistance, but her injuries proved fatal.

Fire personnel who were attending a fire gave medical attention to the couple. Photograph by John Kelly.
Fire personnel who were attending a fire gave medical attention to the couple. Photograph by John Kelly.

While the fire crew were attending to Mrs Billing, the local garda went into the apartment that she shared with her husband and two children, aged two and three and found Mr Billing with serious neck injuries.

The couple had been renting the apartment, which is above a shop next door to Kildysart Post Office, since March of this year.

They are believed to have only come to Ireland early this year and were not very well known in the community.  It is understood that Mr Billing travelled for work, and had only returned from working abroad to their Kildysart home this month.

The couple’s young children, a boy and a girl, were in the apartment when the tragic incident took place but were uninjured and did not require medical attention. They are currently in foster care under the supervision of the HSE.

Gardaí today began house-to-house enquiries and are appealing to anyone who may have witnessed or heard anything on Wednesday night to contact Kilrush Garda Station on 065 9080550, where an incident room has been set up.


About Carol Byrne

Carol Byrne is a reporter at The Clare Champion newspaper reporting on news in the East Clare area and the arts. She also covers the courts in County Clare and has received seven national awards for this coverage from the Law Society of Ireland and a National Lottery Local Ireland national media award for Best Community Story 2019. A Masters in Journalism graduate of NUI Galway, she also holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Limerick in Music and Media Studies, and a Higher Diploma in Irish Legal Studies. She began her career interning at The Limerick Leader and Clare FM, before taking up a full time post at The Clare Champion in 2006.

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