‘A loving child’: Dylan Coady-Coleman (10), who died after being struck by van in Shannon, remembered at funeral

Family urges mourners to think about organ donation after issue was discussed in ‘caring’ schoolboy’s class shortly before his death

Shannon schoolboy Dylan Coady-Coleman (10) “has worked five or six miracles by giving new life and hope” to others with the donation of his organs.

That was according to Shannon co-parish priest, Fr Michael Geraghty, who made his tribute to “loving child” Dylan at the end of the funeral mass at a packed Mary Immaculate Church in Shannon on Sunday to celebrate the life of the “precious member” of the local community.

Dylan died on Wednesday at the Children’s Health Ireland hospital at Temple Street, Dublin – just one day after his mother, Laura, gave birth to his new brother, Shane. The fourth class pupil had been struck by a van at Purcell Park, Shannon, the previous Sunday afternoon.

Laura cradled six-day-old Shane in her arms as she walked behind Dylan’s white coffin up the church aisle to the sound of the Liverpool FC anthem You’ll Never Walk Alone.


The football club’s colours were draped over Dylan’s small coffin and the packed church later heard a poignant tribute called “why we love Dylan” that his sister Zoe put together while he lay in hospital.

Zoe said, in a tribute read out to mourners, they love Dylan “because he is the best, because he helps when I’m hurt and because he cares about us”. Zoe said they love Dylan because he is super funny “and how he reads me books and how he annoys Dad with his quirky ways”.

At the Mass, mourners complied with the family’s wishes to wear jersey tops and odd socks in tribute to the schoolboy.

Jerseys presented as symbols of Dylan’s life at the start of the mass included a Liverpool top, an Ireland rugby top and his blue Shannon Town soccer jersey. Other gifts included Dylan’s Xbox controller, a pair of binoculars with which he used to watch aircraft, Lego and two small cuddly toys.

Concelebrant Fr Tom Whelan said “Dylan’s accident and subsequent passing has certainly brought a stop to this parish”.

“It is almost as if a dark cloud just covered Shannon. And the people are most assuredly lost for words and that great sense that all we want to do something has been evident here today and everyday since.”

“There is a huge sense in this community of shock, sadness and loss. Sadness is present everywhere and I found it especially during the week in Dylan’s school St Tola’s,” he said.

“And I just think of the care and the devotion of all teaching staff to the pupils in their care. It is so obvious in St Tola’s and all of the schools in the Shannon parish. They have such a close bond to the children they are looking after.”

Fr Whelan said that Dylan was a very normal, very loving child and “there was something very caring about Dylan”.

Fr Whelan revealed that there was recently a discussion in Dylan’s class about organ donation.

“When Dylan came home that day – that was what he talked about with his family. It really was top of his agenda that day and saying that he would certainly want to be an organ donor. Sadly no one thought that it would happen so, so quickly,” he said.

“But Dylan has now given life to a number of other people by being a donor. This is extremely important to his family and they would certainly encourage everyone to think seriously about being an organ donor.”

Fr Whelan said: “The people who know Dylan best are his family and it is parents Garry and Laura who will forever have the most beautiful memories of Dylan.”

Fr Whelan said that the family are so grateful for all the support they have received from the Shannon community and are especially grateful of the air ambulance service last Sunday, the support of An Garda Síochána and all those in the health service, including staff at Temple Street.

Dylan’s remains were later laid to rest at the nearby Illaunmanagh Cemetery.