TWO extremely harrowing stories in our newspaper this week that will make any parent catch their breath.
So different in their circumstances but so similar in their outcomes - families torn apart by the death of a child.
Twelve-year-old Josh Trowell was sitting on the handlebars of his bicycle, ridden by a pal, when it careered into the path of a car.
Ryan Walker, 15, drowned while swimming in an abandoned quarry, which was known locally and, sickeningly temptingly, as ‘Blue Lagoon’.
Josh died in October 2010, Ryan in 2009 - but none of us would be foolish enough to imagine that either family has moved on, recovered or, indeed, would ever wish to forget.
Their lives are forever changed by the tragedies that have befallen them.
In our pages this week they bravely speak to our readers in the hope that by sharing their grief, other tragedies will be prevented.
“You think it’s something that’s never going to happen to you - but it does, and it shattered my life....I will never be the same, part of me has died,” says Josh’s grandma Margaret Crehan.
All our hearts should go out to these families today.
We hope they find peace .