A Galway town is in mourning after a two-year-old girl and her baby sister were mown down by a runaway car while out walking with their father.

Katie Gilmore and her 12-week-old sister died as they walked along a country road with their father John.

He suffered minor injuries when a car smashed into them on the hard shoulder of the N17 road just outside Tuam.

Police believe the driver of the car may have suffered a seizure before he smashed into the family during their Sunday morning walk.

The driver, currently being treated for injuries in a Galway hospital, is known to the Gilmore family.
Officers investigating the tragedy are waiting to quiz him at his hospital bed.

John’s uncle Michael Gilmore told the Irish Sun: “John was devoted to the girls.

“He had taken them for a pre-Sunday lunch stroll and was pushing Grace in a buggy, with Katie walking beside him.

“John works in Derry during the week as a civil engineer and spends the whole weekend with his little girls. We are devastated.

“You hear these stories all the time but when it comes to your own door you really understand.

“The whole extended family was in Lanzarote last week at a wedding. I used to see little Katie playing in the sand every day in the sunshine.”

The paper also reports that the vehicle involved in the collision had clipped another car a short time earlier.

Police were on the way to investigate that incident when the tragedy struck.

John’s father John Francis and mother Ann own the popular Cortoon Inn in Tuam and are well known in Galway GAA circles.

His uncle Tommy Joe Gilmore was a famous Galway footballer who played in three All-Ireland finals in the 1970s and won two All-Star awards.

Local Fine Gael councillor Tom McHugh told the Irish Sun: “This was a terrible tragedy. I knew the parents and two kids and their grandparents.

“There’s a huge sense of grief in the area and the sympathies of everyone go to the family today.”