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21st Feb 2023

Tributes pour in for Irish mechanic killed in accident in New Zealand

Simon Kelly

A 24-year old man from County Laois passed away in a tragic accident while working in New Zealand, late last week.

It is understood that the man, named locally as Sean Clear, died as overhead lines were struck while he was attempting to retrieve machinery. He would have celebrated his 25th birthday on Monday.

Mr Clear, a former pupil of Ballacolla National School and St Fergal’s in Rathdowney and graduate of Salesian Agricultural College, Pallaskenry, had been working in New Zealand since last autumn. Coming from a prominent GAA family in the area, he played hurling for Clough-Ballacolla, where his father Tom was a recent vice president.

Clough-Ballacolla chairman, Gordon Pearson led the tributes.

“We as a community, as a club; we are deeply saddened over it. The nicest young lad young lad you could ever meet. He was such a nice chap. He had a word for everybody.”

“We are deeply saddened over it and we will do all we can to support them in this terrible time. They are a lovely family. It is terrible. It was a freak accident.”

Another local club, Ballypickas, also paid tribute to the 24-year-old.

“The club would like to express their deepest sympathy and condolences to Tom, Julia and Ella Clear, Ballacolla on the very sad loss of their son [and] brother Sean.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the family, extended family and friends of Sean. May he rest in peace.”

Mr Clear is survived by his father Tom, mother Julie, sister Ella and a wide circle of family and friends. Funeral arrangements are not yet confirmed. No arrangements have been made as yet for the repatriation of Sean’s remains.