Jennifer Gallagher-Pinson, 46, the Denver based Irish woman who cared for the Aurora Batman shooting victims in the aftermath of the horrific attack has drowned. She was a critical care emergency room nurse.
President Obama and his wife Michelle had earlier paid tribute to Jenny and to her hospital colleagues, who were credited with saving the lives of many injured in the senseless massacre.
But now her family has a tragedy of their own to contend with. Meath native Jenny was reportedly swimming in a lake near her home when she she got into difficulties and drowned.
Husband Greg Pinson and their five-year-old son Jack are said to be struggling to come to terms now with the loss of a 'wonderful mother.'
Her mother Brigid told the media: 'I am heartbroken, it is just terrible, terrible. She was such a wonderful person who was just so full of life and a wonderful mother who loved Jack so much.'
'I will miss her so much. Her brothers and sisters went over for the funeral and we had a little mass for her here. She could light up a room when she walked into it.'
In the 1990s Jenny had studied to be a nurse in Denver and decided to live there.
She was a Gaelic games fanatic and she personally founded the Denver Gaels ladies football club.
The club posted a tribute to her on its website this week, describing Jenny as a 'loving and devoted mother' and a 'proud Meath woman.'
'When you met Jenny she brightened up your day and wanted to know how you were doing. Others always came first in the most natural and sincere way.
'In her vocation as a nurse, she cared for those with most acute needs in the burn unit, the ER and most recently was recognized for her work with the Aurora shooting victims by President Obama. We were all very proud of her.'
“We got to know Jenny as a teammate in 1999, she was a proud Meath woman who played on the first Ladies football team at the North American Finals in 2000. While Jenny and the ladies did not win that year, she led the support from the sidelines as they drove our mens football team to an historic Junior B championship. Overnight Jenny became a much loved member of our tight knit community which for many of us functions as a second family in America.
'Jenny was excited to be back playing football this year and was enjoying the Friday night games at Infinity Park and also played on the Denver Gaels ladies football team at the recent Irish festival, beating teams from San Francisco and Dallas to win the tournament. She so loved to be with the Ladies that were her team mates and so many who were her very close friends. Memories of trips with the Gaels whether it was for tournaments, camping in Moab, or surfing in Costa Rica would never have been so fond had Jenny not been there.We will always remember her wonderful smile, her loving and sharing nature.'
No Irish Need Apply? Not anymore