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M1 crash: Nurse Imelda was ‘true friend’ who did so much for her Galbally community

"24 hours before it, she would have seen the delight on her daughters faces and spending quality time with the family that meant the most."

Police have appealed for witnesses to the Boxing Day collision on the M1 which claimed the life of Galbally mum-of-two Imelda Quinn.

Mrs Quinn, who was a nurse, was aged in her 40s.

The one-vehicle collision happened on the motorway between the Stangmore and Tamnamore roundabouts on Monday afternoon.

Mrs Quinn was described in a death notice as the “deeply loved wife of Gavin, most cherished mother to Nina and Norah, dearly beloved daughter of Cormac and Anne, cherished sister of Fergal, Angela (Morgan) and Cormac Óg and sister in-law of Mari, Colin and Seline”.

The motorway was closed for some time while enquiries were carried out at the scene but has since reopened to traffic.

Sergeant Broderick from the Roads Policing Unit said: “Police received a report just before 1.30pm, that a blue Mercedes car had left the east-bound carriageway of the motorway, near the Stangmore junction. Emergency services attended but the woman sadly died later in hospital as a result of her injuries.

“We are appealing to anyone who was travelling on the M1 in the area of the Stangmore junction and witnessed the collision or anyone who may have dash-cam footage, to contact the Collision Investigation Unit on 101, and quote reference number 779 of 26/12/22.”

Meanwhile, tributes are continuing to be paid to the popular young mum.

She had been deeply involved in the arts and working in her local community and a touching reflection of her life and contribution was shared on social media by CannyMan Galbally, which read: “Rest in Eternal Peace Imelda x

“Today our hearts are broken with the devastating news about the sudden passing of our dear and loyal friend and trustee, Imelda. It is difficult to find words to articulate the incredible loss, grief and sorrow felt at this time.

“Imelda was a founding member of CannyMan Community Arts. Coming from a family steeped in music and arts and with an abundance of talent, Imelda had the foresight to create an organisation that would celebrate the arts and provide opportunities to showcase talent within the Galbally community.

“Imelda was driven and determined to reach high standards and was always to the fore in all our biggest events.

“Imelda never shirked responsibility and led from the front, setting an example to everyone and inspiring those around her.

“Imelda was incredibly passionate about her community and from a very young age had selflessly contributed her time to make a positive contribution and improve the lives of others. This was not surprising given the example set by her mother, Ann, and sister, Angela, who both have given decades of voluntary service to community life.

“Imelda always embraced responsibility and was a key figure in Galbally Youth Club for many years. Without Imelda, we would not have the range and quality of provision for young people that we now take for granted.

“Imelda has made an indelible mark on her community in her short life. We will never forget what Imelda has contributed to our organisation and to the wider community. But it is Imelda’s friendship, love and unwavering loyalty that we will remember with great fondness. Nothing will ever take away our memories of a true friend.

“We extend our arms around the Mc Donnell, Quinn and Morgan family at this difficult time. May they take comfort in knowing that someone so special as Imelda will never be forgotten.

“Ar dheis Dé go raibh a hanam dílis.”

A weekly music session which takes place in the Galbally Community Centre was due to take place tomorrow (Wednesday) but has been postponed as a mark of respect.

Mrs Quinn was one of four people killed on Tyrone roads on Boxing Day.

A man in his 20s and two women, aged in their 80s and 50s, were killed in a collision between Dungannon and Cookstown, while a woman in her 20s and four children were injured.

Reflecting on the loss of life on a day of carnage, Councillor Jason Barr said: “24 hours isn’t a long time when it comes to spending it with the ones that mean the most.

“Imelda Quinn. A mother to two beautiful daughters had her life cut tragically short. 24 hours before it, she would have seen the delight on her daughters faces and spending quality time with the family that meant the most.
“24 hours later the Quinn family along with two other families, where a woman in her 80s and another in her 50s, and a male in his 20s have been put into the most deepest state of grief beyond what anyone can imagine.

“My heartfelt condolences go out to the families and friends today and also my thoughts go out to the emergency personnel who attended the scene. Don’t take a second for granted that’s spent with our loved ones. Totally heartbreaking.”

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